Since 2015, #WeAreHope is an annual collaboration between Hope Coalition and Henderson County Public Schools. This week-long initiative occurs just before spring break to educate and raise awareness about the dangers of substance misuse.
Activities within the schools are student-led and vary to include banners signed by students pledging to remain substance-free, tying white ribbons in remembrance of those lost, and themed clothing days, such as White-Out Wednesdays or Crazy Sock Day. Assemblies often feature local speakers who have either personally overcome substance misuse or seen firsthand the devastating effects of addiction.
#WeAreHope week culminates with a banner-hanging event at the Historic Henderson County Courthouse, featuring speakers from local government, law enforcement, and other community leaders.
We have also hosted events during #WeAreHope Week to engage and inform community leaders, including a speaking engagement with Sam Quinones, author of the award-winning book "Dreamland: The True Tale of America's Opiate Epidemic."
After each #WeAreHope Week, letters and comments start coming in from students about how addiction has touched their lives. We aim to bring parents and guardians into the fold by providing them similar information to what their children learn during the week and encouraging further dialogue.
The videos below give vulnerable insight into the impacts of substance misuse as well as highlight an important message from #WeAreHope Week: every life has value and there are resources to support healing and recovery.
Refer to our toolkit as a framework to start a drug prevention and awareness campaign that is tailored to your own community's needs.
Feel free to reach out to us if you would like any advice on implementing a plan in your area.
Hope Coalition Director Julie Huneycutt shares the story of her youngest daughter, Anna, and how her unimaginable loss drove her to find hope and meaning.
Hope Coalition Operations Manager Jessi Correa opens up about her experiences with trauma, substance use disorder, loss and how she found her road to hope.