All Scott County citizens are urged to participate in the “Stand in the Gap” prayer march on Sunday, November 4 at 3:00 pm at the Huntsville Mall. This event is sponsored by STAND. (Schools Together Allowing No Drugs) and is supported by local churches. STAND is an organization dedicated to preventing and stopping drug abuse among children from 6th through 12th grades. This program mandates and provides drug testing for any student who wishes to participate in ANY school activity (sports, band, clubs, field trips, parking on school property, etc.) that is not part of the basic state-supported curriculum. Those testing positive face mandatory after-school counseling, and transportation home is provided. Records are confidential and are destroyed after graduation so that they will not cause trouble later in life.
Alcohol and drug abuse are major problems for youth and adults in rural areas such as Scott and MorganCounties, just as they are in urban areas. The innocent victims of this problem are the children. Not only are the children of families with drug and alcohol problems more likely to become addicted themselves, but they are more likely to be abused. Moreover, the money spent on drugs and alcohol deprives these children of the food, clothing, healthcare, and stable homes they need to succeed in life. Young people raised in an environment of addiction are much more likely to make the wrong life choices that lead to poverty. According to Director Ella Smith, most of the families MSP serves have been touched by an addiction problem. Frequently, grandparents call to say that they have taken children into their homes because one or both parents are using drugs. Yet they are reluctant to draw attention to the problem.
STAND was introduced to Scott County in 2000 by Judge Jamie Cotton. It has been very popular because it addresses the problem of drugs early in the child’s life, because it allows parents to avoid the uncomfortable confrontation of having their children tested, because it provides educational information to both parents and children, and because each child’s slate is wiped clean after he or she graduates. The “Stand in the Gap” prayer movement was started a couple of years ago in Clay County, Kentucky. It is now being observed in nine counties in Kentucky and Tennessee and continues to grow by calling attention to the problem and to the help offered by STAND.
The poster for this event states “Only God Can Help Us!” We couldn’t agree more, but remember: we are God’s hands on earth. Therefore, we urge you to attend this prayer rally and while you are there, pray about what God is leading you to do about the drug and alcohol problem in ScottCounty. Then pray about what God is leading your church, your school, your club, your business, and your local government to do. Then make it happen. This is a problem that reaches into every aspect of our lives, and it will take a cooperative effort, with God’s help, to solve it.
Article by Ray Boles