Games, live music and interactive presentations will all be part of an upcoming free forum for youth in Ladysmith.
Ladysmith Parks, Recreation and Culture will host a free “Sex, Drugs and Rock ‘n Roll” Youth Forum this Friday (May 4) from 6-10 p.m. at the Frank Jameson Community Centre gym.
This is the third year for the youth forum in Ladysmith.
“It’s super fun,” said Danielle Eastick, youth program co-ordinator with Ladysmith Parks, Recreation and Culture.
The Sex, Drugs and Rock ‘n Roll Youth Forum is free for teens aged 13 to 18.
The idea for the forum came out of the town’s Youth Advisory Coalition, which wanted to create an initiative that could reach the majority of teenagers in the community and help teens make connections with youth workers, explained Eastick.
“We wanted to get our faces out there,” she said. “We have youth workers from the community come to develop that initial relationship piece. That’s such a tricky time when teens are seeking help, making that connection.”
During the forum, two bands from Ladysmith Secondary School will be performing, and there will be a variety of activities.
There will be an education side to the forum, with a lot of hands-on learning, an interactive presentation by substance use counsellor Griffin Russell, and a lot of opportunities to find out about various resources and meet people who work with youth.
But the event is also meant to be a lot of fun, with sumo suits, tug-o-wars, condom crafts, foosball, air hockey and a photo booth. There will be a few door prizes throughout the night, and there will be food.
Eastick hopes teens who participate in the forum will take away “awareness of some of the issues they have to face as teens and to know there are people who support them in this community and resources for them.”
She also hopes teens will learn not to be afraid of issues that come up.
“We’re making it fun, interactive and positive,” she said.