Georgiana FOCUS group gets special recognition

Published 1:59 pm Friday, January 6, 2012

Georgiana School’s FOCUS group is focusing on a new recognition and new opportunity that could possibly bring $500 to the school.

The FOCUS group has received the FOCUSED& Featured School for the month of December for FOCUS.

“FOCUS promotes school and community partnerships for the prevention of HIV/AIDS and other adolescent risk behaviors,” a FOCUS press released stated. “The program is based on a student led approach and seeks to promote youth involvement in the planning of prevention activities.”

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Beverly Cooke, coordinator of the group and the school nurse at Georgiana and 14 other students make up the team that has been working toward handing out knowledge to other students.

“It’s to give them good information so that they can make the best possible decisions for their life and that’s the mission of the group,” Cooke said. “What we have done is (FOCUS) wants you to participate in some of the state awareness recognitions every month with a certain disease or risk and ask if your students would participate in just give out the information on that level to their peers.”

The group has participated in several activities such as presenting a skit to high school students on National Aids Day.

“The Georgiana FOCUS group presented a program to grades 9-12 that began with group members reading facts about HIV/AIDS,” the press release said. “Next, they performed an interpretation to the music of R. Kelley “U Saved Me” showing risk behaviors. Following the interpretation, Kendall Maye, the area 9 HIV/AIDS Coordinator, addressed the high school student body and gave an opportunity for questions and answers.”

The FOCUS Program has created an opportunity for FOCUSED & Featured schools to be eligible to win $500 for School of the Year. That award will be presented at the Rally for Awareness on April 19 at Shocco Springs in Talladega, Ala.

“(The group’s) ultimate goal would be to go to Talladega,” Cooke said. “There is another level. We will go into a drawing and draw out the school that could possibly bring $500 to the school.”

The group is now focused on raising enough money to travel to Talladega to not only accept its award but also participate in the possible $500 award.

“The first thing they saw when they saw the little children thanking them for so much for just a little red ribbons that said ‘no to drugs’, was that (the children) listened. “Each time we do something, they see how important it is to have the right information and it encourages them.”