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Had a GREAT Day with @OperSnowball and @RonJakubisin #iledchat

I went to the training today at West Leyden High school and had no idea what to really expect.  I was surprised at how much I was able to take with me home from a short couple of hours.


We started the day with just getting to know who else was in the room and I was surprised to find that there were people from Marian and Bloom at this event (crazy that we had to drive so many miles to find each other and we are less than 10 away from each other in real life).  Afterwards we did a carousel session where we talked about four topics (drugs/alcohol, retreats, community, and decision making).  I was randomly placed in a group of almost all teens which was a little scary but they took to me alright 🙂 I got so many ideas on how to improve on our weekend and community outreach.  Some of the things floating in my head include:

  • Bring back the fuzzies!  We had our reasons behind outlawing them but I realized that I miss them and want them back.  To reintroduce them I plan to bring them for our trip to EIU and introduce them back to staff.  There was another idea to have a “warm fuzzy day” at school that I also thought would be fun.
  • To help get the word out about making healthy choices in life I would like to do a social media assignment to our Snowballers where they post photos of themselves doing fun drug free things and hashtag it Snowball
  • I liked the idea of inviting parents to attend a small group session during the weekend.
  • I got some leads on other camps to use for the program including Camp Henry Horner and Camp Dunkin
  • I thought about the possibility of bringing Snowball activities (like ice breakers) to our Study Halls to help introduce the program to people who might not otherwise have heard of it
  • Since so many students admire our teen staff’s tshirts maybe give them a day to create their own painted shirts and have a spirit day at school when we all wear them.
  • Heard about this activity called “From Experimenting to Dependency in 43 Seconds” and would love to introduce that to our staff
  • The teens had mentioned using teen staff do to personal stories.  We have typically shied away from that as they tend to get a little exaggerated in the details but maybe it is worth another consideration.  The teens had mentioned that they have their directors preview the story before the presentation which sounds like a good idea.
  • The skits put on by Naperville were great.  Here is a link to their YouTube channel.
    • I liked the version of this skit that we saw
    • There was an awesome skit where everyone in a line quoted something they purchased “or not” and the cost of it and the last line was “remembering all of these things because we are drug free is…. PRICELESS”
    • There was another in a line skit where each person started with “because I wanna be..” and the last line was “these are my # reasons I’m drug free
  • More than just wearing our Snowball tshirts on Tuesdays for meetings, I thought it would be fun to expand that to more of a spirit Tuesday kind of thing
  • Loved doing Simon Says and relating it to the idea of people follow what you do not necessarily just what you say
  • Loved the activity where we identified 26 brands based on one letter of their advertisement and related it to “what are we advertising” about Snowball?  It is not just the posters we hang but rather the lives we lead

It was totally worth while and I look forward to not only working with my own staff to make our program even better but reaching out to our community to have a bigger impact.


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