Talk to Your State Senator – Video Competition

I want to inform everyone of an initiative the Senate of Pennsylvania has organized to combat drug and alcohol addiction by encouraging middle and high school students to help find solutions to the growing heroin and opioid epidemic facing our commonwealth.  “Talk To Your State Senator” is a statewide video competition sponsored by the Senate of Pennsylvania with support from the members of the Drug and Alcohol Service Providers Organization of Pennsylvania (DASPOP). It is intended to get students involved in continued legislative efforts to fight heroin and opioid abuse. 

The growing heroin and opioid epidemic is taking lives every day and does not discriminate.  It affects communities all across Pennsylvania, and doesn’t care whether you’re rich, or poor, or somewhere in between.  Having hosted two town halls in the spring on this subject I have seen firsthand what this epidemic is doing to families in the 42nd senatorial district. 

Beginning later month and running through December 10, students can submit a video, up to five minutes in length, explaining their approach to preventing teens from using drugs and alcohol.  All entries must be submitted using the registration form available by clicking here or visiting www.acommonwealthcrisis.com and clicking on the “Video Competition” tab.

The video competition is available to Pennsylvania school students in grades 6-12, in public and private schools, and will be judged in two categories: middle school, grades 6-8, and high school, grades 9-12.  Students will be divided into 50 regions, competing in their home address senatorial district.  From the 50 semi-finalists in each category, one first, second and third place finalist will be selected.  Students may enter individually or in a group of up to five students.  The video submitted must address the issue of preventing teens from starting and using drugs, legal and illegal, including underage drinking.

DASPOP is providing $10,000 that will be divided into six monetary prizes.  The prizes will be $2,500 for 1st, $1,500 for 2nd, and $1,000 for 3rd place in each of the two categories. Prize money will be awarded through the PA 529 College Savings Account Program and deposited into a college savings account in the winner(s) names.

The video competition is a creative way to educate young people on the dangers associated with using drugs while offering a chance to win prize money to help pay for a post-secondary education.  More information on the video competition including guidelines on submitting videos, content, judging and prizes, can be found at www.acommonwealthcrisis.com, a website established by the Senate of Pennsylvania as a tool to provide information and resources on the heroin and opioid crisis. It includes information on the signs of addiction, how to get treatment, prevention, and much more.