United Way


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Your United Way of Jackson County support is helping young students understand how alcohol, tobacco, and drugs will negatively impact their lives.


We believe kids who have been a part of this United Way funded program will make positive choices and will remain on their pathway to stability and success. The Breakout Drug Education Program provides school based education for middle and high school students throughout Jackson County. They are making an IMPACT in our community. The following was taken from a “Letter of Support” written by a Columbia Central teacher.

This program is effective because it is geared toward the middle school/high school level so the students take great interest in it. I have seen how the visual effects, such as the discolored cloth in the bottles due to cigarette smoke or the visually impairing glasses, have made a tremendous impact on the students. The presenters are also very effective. Shelly Milligan has taught the 6th grade program for many years now, and each year, we teachers are impressed with her natural teaching ability and how well she relates to the students. She gets the information across in a way that makes it possible for the students to understand, and they retain the information. I truly believe that this program is convincing students to stay away from drugs and alcohol by showing them some of the consequences ahead of time in a safe and controlled environment.

My son is a 9th grader this year so he has gone through this program for three years. He recently finished this year’s program, and he told me afterward that he would never use drugs with such conviction that I was once again incredibly impressed with the effectiveness of this program. He also went as far as telling his younger sister that she should never do drugs explaining some of the health issues and dangers involved with that type of lifestyle. I whole-heartedly believe he will not use drugs as he gets older, and not because he knows they are “bad” and illegal, but because he understands the severity of the risks to his health. To me, that is the real key to get through to this age group; don’t tell them it is bad, show them the true dangers and health risks associated with using these substances.

75% of students who took part in the Breakout Program said there is little to no chance they will use drugs and 89% of middle school students signed a pledge to stay drug free. Students across Jackson County realize the negative effects drugs will have on their future. They realize that they want more for themselves. Your support is IMPACTING young lives in our community.

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