Gloria McNeill, from MADD, second left, accepts a donation from the TOSH SADD group for the MADD campaign. McNeill lost her son Adam to a drunk driver in 2001.Making the presentation are members of SADD Ashley Cameron (left) Jessica Campbell and Bronwyn Bridges.
SUMMERSIDE – Students at Three Oaks Senior High School were given a powerful presentation on the consequences of impaired driving.
Students Against Drinking and Driving (SADD) in partnership with Mothers Against Drinking and Driving (SADD) presented real-life stories from family members who have lost a loved one or a friend to a drunk driver and from victims who survived an accident but had their lives changed forever.
Students were also presented with a short film of high schools students partying, making the wrong choices and what happens when an impaired drivers gets behind the wheel of a car.
Josee Levesque. School representative with MADD campaign offered some sobering numbers and advice to the students on stopping impaired driving.
“Every single day in Canada, four people die because of this,” she said. “Hundreds are injured every day because of this. These numbers are frustrating to me and should be frustrating to you. We all know that they are completely preventable.”
Levesque pointed to the film saying, there were some bad decisions made by the participants but also so good ones.
She said one student tried to talk another of driving drunk but when he refused another student called 911 advising them of a drunk driver on the road.
“I understand that that might be a really hard call to make but would you rather call 911and save somebody’s life or would you rather attend that person’s funeral knowing that you could have done something about it?” she said. “We all have the power to keep ourselves safe. We all have the power to keep out families safe and we especially all have the power to change those numbers So, those four people that die every day in Canada, we can do something about it. Be the generation that changes those numbers
The presentation made its mark with the students.
Shalynn Buss said, this type of public discussion raises the awareness of what happens when people drive drunk.
“I love these kinds of presentations because they show a lot of inspiration and education about this kind of thing,” she said. “It’s really sad how families go through this kind of thing.”
Buss people must be aware of the consequences of impaired driving so it won’t be done in the future.
“It makes us make some hard decisions,” she said.
Megan Richard said, people need to be educated on the dangers of driving drunk.
“I found, honestly, that a lot of people actually do this and they don’t understand the circumstances,” she said. “People should really know the fact that families are destroyed because of this and people really need to make better decisions before they decide to do something like that.”
Mitch Rayner saw the message as moving and powerful.
“Having this kind of thing, taking class time out just to go over this is really powerful,” he said. “Even if you haven’t been through something like that you can understand that people have, what they’ve gone through. It’s something that’s totally preventable, especially in high school and it should be taught to everybody.”
Alex Moase said it’s everyone’s responsibility to help prevent impaired driving.
“I think it was a really great presentation,” he said. “It was very touching especially for those that can relate to situations like this. We can take it to heart and prevent it in the future, especially for us being in high school, we’re going to be out in the adult world so and it’s going to be a lot more serious.”
Students will continue taking part in safe driving practices with a session on the dangers of texting and driving.