Posted by Wyckoff Schools Today at 12/20/2016
Eisenhower Middle School recently hosted a H.A.P.P.Y. presentation to the community and students . H.A.P.P.Y. stands for Heroin Addiction Prevents People’s Years and is a program that was designed by Northern Highlands junior Stephanie Reifman to bring awareness about the severity and prevalence of heroin addiction in Bergen County.
In 2013 alone, Bergen County experienced more than 27 fatal heroin overdoses. To help combat this trend, Wyckoff District School Counselor Erica Ward brought the H.A.P.P.Y. program to Eisenhower Middle School.
Reifman spoke with students about the death of beloved Glee actor Cory Monteith, who lost his life to a heroin overdose in 2013. While providing students with information about the issues of heroin addiction, Reifman also brought awareness to the community by discussing its presence in the county. She also brought in a parent from Franklin Lakes to discuss the tragic overdose and death of her daughter. Bringing real faces to this issue made the community more aware of the severity of this issue.
The program was a huge success, especially among students. Erica Ward commented, "In addition to the need we saw as staff to educate our students on the risks and prevalence of substance use, students reported they found the information Stephanie provided especially informative and impactful because it was coming from the perspective of a student not much older than they were."
For more information about the H.A.P.P.Y. program, please visit their website.