Fundraiser Helps Teach Children About Reality Of Drug Addiction

L-R, Marianne Winfield, Tom Robinson, Tommie Lou Judson, Bill McCrain, Officer Chris Fritz, Ken Rodenbaugh RN CARN CEN (Photo courtesy Ken Rodenbaugh)

WARETOWN – A check for $3,500 was given during a recent fundraiser at Greenbriar Oceanaire to help educate children about the effects of drugs through Project Aware.

More than 300 people came out to the show, featuring local band Shorty Long.

Project Aware is a dramatic presentation to inform and educate sixth graders about the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse, said program coordinator Ken Rodenbaugh. Through realistic presentations of real-life details that connect with students’ lives and experiences, students learn the consequences of making bad choices and discover that they have the power to make smart decisions. It’s formed from a partnership with Hackensack Meridian Health’s Southern Ocean Medical Center, and local police, first aid, and school officials.

The program originated in Stafford Township. Last year, the Maximillian Foundation made a commitment to Project Aware by donating $5,000 to help grow the program beyond Stafford, where it has reached more than 5,000 students in the past twenty years.

This year, Project Aware will be brought to Little Egg Harbor, Barnegat, Point Pleasant Borough, and Toms River Intermediate East, as well as Stafford Township.