Thousands of students say ‘no’ to drugs at Red Ribbon Week

November 4, 2011

More than 3,000 students from west San José participated in the closing ceremony of a weeklong drug prevention program Friday morning. The U.S. Embassy, in conjunction with the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and Drug Abuse Resistance Education (DARE) program, partnered with grade schools in the Pavas Municipality for the 2011 Semana del Lazo Rojo, or Red Ribbon Week, at the National Stadium.

U.S. Ambassador to Costa Rica Anne Slaughter Andrew called Red Ribbon Week a terrific program focused on preventing kids from using drugs.

This is the fifth year that Costa Rica has taken part in the event, observed during the last week of October. Throughout the week, students joined in cultural and anti-drug activities and played sports. The event honors U.S. DEA agent Enrique Kiki Camarena, who was killed in 1985 by Mexican drug lord Rafael Caro Quintero.

“If there are drugs, there is no pura vida,” said Geneva “Mika” Camarena, Kiki Camarena’s widow, to the crowd of young people gathered in the stadium.

During the closing ceremony, students pledged to live a drug-free life by displaying anti-drug signs, chanting slogans and singing songs. Student representatives from each school received a trophy honoring their drug prevention work.

Andrew said the event was important for the future of Costa Rica as drug cartels push deeper into the isthmus.

“One of the many steps that Costa Rica needs to take is to continue to invest in education and economic opportunities for their youth and to talk honestly with them about the dangers of drugs and the value of leading a drug-free life,” Andrew said.

You may be interested

5 questions for US painter Suzahn King
Weekend Arts Spotlight
66 views
Weekend Arts Spotlight
66 views

5 questions for US painter Suzahn King

Elizabeth Lang - May 20, 2018

Suzahn King's paintings, known for their intricate details, are currently focused on her surroundings in Costa Rica, a country she…

Jean Marc Calvet, part III: Leaving Marco behind
Artists
253 views
Artists
253 views

Jean Marc Calvet, part III: Leaving Marco behind

Elizabeth Lang - May 18, 2018

This is the story of Nicaraguan-based French artist Jean Marc Calvet: a man whose complex life, obscurities and misfortunes overwhelmed…

Traditional masks
Tico Times Pic of the Day
269 views
Tico Times Pic of the Day
269 views

Traditional masks

The Tico Times - May 18, 2018

Creating masks out of balsa wood, carved by their own hands and based on the their community's traditions, the Brunca…