High Prairie high school students learned a lesson about the life-changing influences of drugs and alcohol from the drummer of a popular Canadian band.
Mitch Dorge of the Crash Test Dummies shared his wisdom and advice at Prairie River Junior High School on March 24 and at St. Andrew’s Catholic School on March 23.
“I believe you are smart people and can make right decisions,” says Dorge, 56, of Winnipeg, who joined the band in April 1991.
“But somebody else can change your fate.
“Innocent lives get changed by irresponsible people.”
Speaking to students from grades 7-12 across Canada for the last seven years sponsored by The Co-operators, he was also sponsored locally by HOSTS (Helping Our Students to Succeed).
“When you make an educated guess, that’s the best decision,” Dorge says.
He urges the students to make healthy choices and live healthy lifestyles, without drugs and alcohol, and to contribute positively to society.
To further press his message, he showed and described graphic visuals and stories of the affects that drugs and alcohol have had on youth and how drugs such as crystal methamphetamine has on the brain.
Under the influence of crystal meth, the brain’s chemicals slow down and deter the thought process.
He also says that drug can impact more than just the producer and consumer.
“It really affects the community in a negative way,” Dorge says.
Statistics show that 40 per cent of crystal meth labs blow up, many of them located in houses in residential areas.
“Burns can be more painful than anything you will ever experience,” Dorge says.
He also tells the story of a teenaged girl who suffered the consequences of burns as a passenger of a vehicle that was hit by a drunk driver, on her way home from a party where she knew when to stop after drinking a small amount.
“She lost everything she had that could identify her face,” Dorge says.
“Each and every one of you, regardless of culture, 45 seconds in a fire and you would look like her.”
The drunk driver walked away and told people that he saw a car crash, not knowing that he was responsible.
“He didn’t know what he had done,” Dorge says.
“He was jailed for five years, but she has to suffer the rest of her life.”
Teens are also encouraged by the drummer to spread the message against drugs, alcohol and drinking and driving.
“We need to stop that from happening,” Dorge says.
“If you could change one person when they leave the bar from getting into the car and not drive, you have helped make part of your dream.”
With his message, he trusts youth don’t want to face similar consequences.
“If I asked everyone of you if you would get into a car with a drunk driver, everyone of you would say no,” Dorge says.
He also urges youth to look at his website mitchdorge.com, print a graphic photo of worst-looking victim and post it in a public place to warn people.