PODA seeks to prevent drug, alcohol use at Kaneland
by Cheryl Gaston
Kaneland Krier Reporter
Kaneland—Drugs and alcohol can consume some high school students, but Prevention of Dangerous Actions (PODA) is working to raise awareness and reduce substance abuse among Kaneland High School students.
“PODA members are working hard to make Kaneland a safer place for everyone,” said Anna Lamica, the club’s sponsor. “The members are part of the solution to major issues at Kaneland, instead of being part of the problem.”
The club, which also works to prevent suicide, bullying, school violence, texting and drinking while driving, and tobacco use, meets every Tuesday at 7:40 a.m. Members plan educational events that they hope will be eye-opening, Lamica said. Last year, PODA held a health fair about tobacco usage with various booths, and the club also sponsors Drug Prevention Week and Alcohol Awareness Week. Members perform skits and have a leadership retreat both in the fall and spring.
Junior Alex Hornback said he joined the club to make other students realize not only how much drugs and alcohol can harm the user, but how it can put others in danger too.
“The assemblies are my favorite part of PODA,” Hornback said. “They show the student body what happens in situations about drinking and driving and what it could do to you.”
One of the year’s largest assemblies, “Please Return on Monday,” will be held immediately before prom and focuses on the dangers of drinking while driving, and of drug abuse. Hornback said members take planning the assembly very seriously because drugs and alcohol are at a higher risk of being used at that time.
Students interested in joining PODA can contact Lamica in the Student Services Office for more information.