Each spring, La Grande Rotary meets at the La Grande Middle School to have lunch. Cafeteria food for Rotarians you ask? Tater tots, mystery meat, and a carton of milk? What is the lure?
The attraction is the students and their reporting on their participation in the Drug Free Youth program. Each year La Grande Rotary and the Grande Ronde Hospital support the program at the Middle School to encourage students to stay drug-free. Students join the DFY club at the beginning of the year, participate in educational activities, ski and bowling excursions, and fun activities as a way to create a culture of students who refrain from drugs and alcohol. Middle school teachers advise the club and arrange the activities. To check on the students’ resolve to remain drug free, the Grande Ronde Hospital administers random drug tests.
At the lunch and presentation, students tell their stories about what they like about the club and how they can resist using. When students are tempted or teased to use drugs or alcohol, they know they can say to their tempting devil that they can’t be tested positive else they could not be in the club or attend any of the associated activities.
La Grande Rotary raises funds to support this program through the Daddy Daughter Dance that occurs each February.