If you go
What: Teen Glow Walk
When: 9 p.m. to midnight Saturday, July 13
Where: Taylor Stadium, University of Jamestown campus
Details: for ages 13-18; free admission; music, prizes, glow sticks, snacks
Teens will be “lighting up the night” on Saturday, July 13, at the Teen Glow Walk at Taylor Stadium on the University of Jamestown campus.
Rachel Finch, an addiction counselor, and Alyssa Dewald, a case manager for the child and family team, both at South Central Human Service Center, are hoping at least 40 teenagers come to the event.
“Both of us work with the youth in the community and we hear a lot that there is nothing to do in town,” Finch said. “So we wanted to put on an event that is specifically for that high school age, so our event is for kids who are 13 to 18.”
The free event, sponsored by the Jamestown Behavioral Health Coalition, has also been opened up to teens 13-18 from surrounding communities including Carrington and Valley City, Finch said.
“It’s going to be a walk at the UJ stadium,” Finch said. She said there will be glow sticks, glow in the dark face paint, glasses, “all that fun stuff, to just give them something to do.”
Free T-shirts, door prizes, snacks and music are planned.
Registration begins at 9 p.m., with the walk starting at 10. The walk will raise awareness for teen behavioral health. The event will include information on mental health and addiction and give teens coping resources, Finch said.
“We wanted something that would appeal to the kids and also be something we could monitor,” Finch said. “Because obviously, we want this to be a sober event. Both of us work with kids who are involved with drug court and probation and have some substance abuse issues.”
There may be teens who do not have issues themselves with mental health and substance abuse but have family members with them, Finch said.
Saturday’s walk is for all teens ages 13-18.
“It’s not limited to kids with mental health issues or substance issues, it’s open to anybody (teens),” Dewald added. “It’s just to raise awareness of the fact that it’s in our community and to lower the stigma of it.”
The Jamestown Behavioral Health Coalition is made up of about 10 members who include staff from South Central Human Service Center and Central Valley Health District primarily. The coalition's Facebook page says it is made up of “ local agencies and interested people who work together to create awareness of and actively promote the prevention, treatment, and recovery of mental health and substance abuse issues.” It works to provide events such as the Teen Glow Walk that was outside of the agencies’ scope.
“We wanted to be able to put together events using our resources but outside of a state agency,” Finch said.
Dewald said the coalition’s goal is to provide more free events for teens, possibly once a month. A family-oriented event may also be planned at some point, they said.
“We’re just hoping for a good turnout (Saturday) so that we can continue to put on events like this,” Finch said.