Maui News

Maui Students Named to Meth Project Teen Advisory Council

August 20, 2014, 4:27 PM HST
* Updated August 20, 4:37 PM
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Sarah Salemi – Grade 11, King Kekaulike High School.  Photo courtesy Hawaiʻi Meth Project.

Sarah Salemi – Grade 11, King Kekaulike High School. Photo courtesy Hawaiʻi Meth Project.

McKayla Wandell – Grade 12, Baldwin High School.  Photo courtesy Hawaiʻi Meth Project.

McKayla Wandell – Grade 12, Baldwin High School. Photo courtesy Hawaiʻi Meth Project.

By Wendy Osher

Two Maui students are among a list of 22 students selected from across the state as part of the Hawaiʻi Meth Project’s Teen Advisory Council for 2014-2015.

King Kekaulike High School eleventh grader, Sarah Salemi and Baldwin High School senior McKayla Wandell were the lone Maui representatives selected for the group.

Organization representatives say the council is tasked with helping to raise awareness about the risks of methamphetamine use, and provide a teen perspective on the campaign’s strategies and messages.

“The truth is that many people become instantly addicted after the first time they try meth and teens need to understand how this dangerous drug can destroy lives,” said Salemi in an organization press release. “It’s an important cause for our community and I’m honored to have been selected to serve on the council and help spread the organization’s prevention message,” she said.

Earlier this year, artist Ken 'East 3' Nishimura created and installed a "Not Even Once" inspired mural at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Maui, Lahaina. Photo courtesy Hawaiʻi Meth Project.

Earlier this year, artist Ken ‘East 3’ Nishimura created and installed a “Not Even Once” inspired mural as part of the Hawaiʻi Meth Project, at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Maui, Lahaina. Photo courtesy Hawaiʻi Meth Project.

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The teen council was selected based on a competitive application and interview process and includes two members from Maui, one from Kauaʻi, four from Hawaiʻi Island, and 15 members from Oʻahu.

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Last year, Maui had five teens that participated in the program, four of which were seniors.  Wandell, the lone junior from Maui County at the time, is now a returning member to the council.

David Earles, executive director for the Hawaiʻi Meth Project also commented saying that the organization is excited to enter its fifth year of operation.  “Our student members have shown great commitment to our organization’s ‘Not Even Once’ message by engaging with their peers and serving as leaders in their communities.  We could not be more proud to see and hear of the impact our council has in educating the youth about the dangers of meth and encouraging a drug-free lifestyle,” he said.

In addition to community events, council members are tasked with organizing awareness activities, and participating in social media outreach.

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