MILLBURN, NJ - Millburn High School inducted 75 students into the peer leadership program on Tuesday, October 22. All members pledged to remain drug and alcohol free and to act as role models for their peers and younger students.
The program, which is very selective in choosing its members, participates in various events throughout the year. Staying drug and alcohol free is one of the main goals, and they teach fourth grade students around the school district about the dangers of drugs and alcohol, as well as teaching them refusal skills. The Peer Leaders also help out with Red Ribbon Week in October, a week dedicated to building awareness and educating families about prevention.
Along with these actions, the peer leaders run the "week of respect" and have charitable evens such as “cram-a-van,” in which shoppers at Shop Rite donate extra food for the Red Cross. They also buy gifts for needy children through DYFS, or New Jersey’s child protection agency, and make meals for a local soup kitchen.
"The peer leadership program induction is probably what I will remember most about the program,” said Ian Jaffe, a junior three-year member of the high school peer leaders. “You have dozens of high school students pledging to lead by example and to stay drug and alcohol free. There is nothing more powerful or meaningful."
Evanie Anglade, a junior officer, added details about the peer leader program: “I have met so many wonderful people I probably would not have had the pleasure of meeting if I were not in this program. I honestly believe that the peer leader program is bettering our community one step at a time and I only have high hopes for this coming year.”
The three senior officers, Josh Hochman, Lily Blumkin and Karen Fich, have spent many years of their Millburn experience helping. For some, the program starts in seventh grade and continues for the rest of their school career.
All the peer leaders are ready and eager to help out their community throughout the incoming year.