New Rochelle High School Students

New Rochelle High School students took part in an awareness day on April 20 presented by the SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions) and CODA (Co-Occuring Disorders Awareness) clubs to help students understand the dangers of making poor decisions involving drugs and alcohol, and mental health.

Stephanie Marquesano, whose son died of an accidental overdose at age 19, made presentations to six classes, and awareness activities were held throughout the day. SADD and CODA members handed out vaping, drug and alcohol informational materials, awareness bracelets, buttons and stickers. They also made mocktails to help build awareness that fun options exist without alcohol. 

Pina Palmisano, the longtime Student Assistance Counselor, said many kids have been isolated and stuck at home as a result of COVID, adding to levels of stress, anxiety and depression. “Some kids may have turned to using drugs or alcohol. What we do is try and understand, to provide more positive choices so they don’t result in doing something like that when their mental health is impaired.”

SADD and CODA meet once a week after school. A mandatory assembly for seniors will be held on May 26 prior to the prom.

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