Thomasville, GA -October 14, 2012
Monday kicks off National Health Education Week and this year's theme is Raising Healthier Adolescents.
All week long, health education specialists across the country will work to raise awareness about health issues for adolescents.
That includes tackling topics like healthy eating habits, the importance of staying active and the dangers of tobacco and alcohol use.
"People want to sit home and play video games all day and stuff like that now days. I think it's good for younger kids to just start playing outside again," said Thomasville resident Antonio Thomas.
Schools and drug education programs like D.A.R.E are also working together to improve the community's health.
"The things we try to teach them are the harmful effects, the truths about these things," said Captain Steve Jones with the Thomas County Sheriff's Office who is also an instructor for D.A.R.E. "Not what their friends are telling them or what they're seeing on TV and in the media. We're trying to tell them the facts."
Thomasville Resident Zoey Jackson added, "I don't think about doing that stuff, especially since I had the classes in elementary school and when I come to do basketball, I don't have to do any of that stuff. I stay in shape and my minds on the basketball, or track, or soccer."
The goal is to educate and empower young people to make informed health decisions.
"I run into kids and some will thank for me for what I taught them when they were in fifth grade and some will say, back here in the jail, I sure wish I would have paid more attention to what you taught me in the fifth grade," said Jones.
National Health Education Week will run from October 15 through October 19th.