Opinion

Shuksan building community with Family Night event Feb. 25

We all lead busy lives, so it’s easy to come home from a long day at work and close the door behind you with little more than a nod to your neighbor. These habits form quickly, especially in a society that values independence and the ability to “do it all” ourselves. The problem with this approach to life is that it doesn’t build relationships; we miss out on the exchange of ideas, sharing of resources, and the support that can come from strong community ties.

It was with the goal of community building in mind that Shuksan Community Family Night was created. The event, now in its fourth year, aims to bring Shuksan Middle School families and community members together for a night of education, conversation and fun.

This event will feature an educational track for adults and one for youth. Adults will be able to attend the following sessions: It’s Not Just Weed: Youth, Marijuana and the Law, Cyber Safety and Digital Awareness, Talking About the Hard Stuff, Advocating for Your Child, The Power of the Family School Connection, and Strong, Smart, Independent Kids, an offering by the WTA.

Youth will be able to attend a Natural High Carnival, where they will learn about the dangers of drug and alcohol use in a fun format. In addition to the carnival, youth can attend one of the following sessions: Girls Rock-Building Your Fearless Side, a discussion designed to empower young women, or they can listen in as former gang members talk about the importance of Choosing Your Own Path. As in years past, youth will also have the opportunity to go head-to-head with the Bellingham police and fire departments in a game of dodgeball.

More than thirty local organizations will be on hand to provide attendees with information about their programs and services. Look for Smart Trips, the Whatcom Dispute Resolutions Center, the Boys and Girls Club, and 4-H, in addition to many others. In an effort to promote fellowship, a pasta dinner will be provided for all attendees and childcare is free of charge for family members too young to attend the youth sessions.

So pack up the family and join us on Wednesday, Feb. 25 from 5:30-8:30 p.m. at Shuksan Middle School for a community building event with a something for everyone.

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