In the upcoming months, Dexter residents will see billboards with messages about SRSLY, and there will be more activities to raise awareness about the community coalition. There will be a dodge-ball tournament on January 23, 2016 for grades 5 through 12, and a Captain SRSLY comic book release in March for grades 2 through 7.
When SRSLY’s Adult Steering Committee got together on December 9, there were plenty of ideas exchanged for spreading the coalition’s message.
“The name has gotten out there, and I’m getting a lot of positive feedback,” said Stephanie Jacques, Coalition Director, SRSLY Dexter. “We participated at Dexter Daze, and offered SRSLY Cinema in the summer, which we plan to do again next year.”
Reiley Curran, Coalition Director, SRSLY, Chelsea, told those at the meeting that some proposed ideas for spreading the word about SRSLY in Dexter in 2016 include promotions on billboards on both Baker Road and I-94, Safe Homes yard signs, a banner on Main Street, and tee-shirts with the website on them.
Jeremy Hilobuk, a deputy with the Washtenaw County Sheriff’s Department, who is assigned to the Dexter school district, wants to coordinate projects with SRSLY in the coming year.
“We work to prevent drinking and driving and texting and driving,” he said.
St. Jacques shared some of SRSLY’s accomplishments from its second year in Dexter at the December 9 meeting:
-Over the past two years, 230 SRSLY volunteers have donated more than 1,300 hours to preventing destructive behavior in Dexter youth.
-37 new youth and adults joined SRSLY.
-Big Red Barrel collected over 200 pounds of medication for safe and legal disposal.
-55 families signed up for the SRSLY Safe Homes List.
Grant support for the past year came from funding from the 5 Healthy Towns Foundation and the Drug Free Communities Support Group.
SRSLY, which is text language for SERIOUSLY, is a team of youth, parents, school employees, and members of the community working together to promote positive choices and prevent youth substance abuse.
SRSLY came to Dexter (A coalition has existed in Chelsea since 2008) when members of Dexter’s Avoid Unhealthy Substances sub-committee formed and decided to focus their efforts on preventing destructive behavior in youth.
“We had a slow start, but I think more community members are aware of the good work that we’re doing now and are getting involved when they can,” said St. Jacque. “Our last few youth meetings have been well attended, and we hope to continue to grow our numbers and include more students from the middle and high school.”
SRSLY works closely with youth in grades 5 and up and will have its last youth meeting of the year on Thursday, December 17 from 3-4:30 p.m. in the Creekside Cafeteria.