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The Orange County Department of Education (OCDE) is a public education organization based on fundamental human values of honesty, commitment, responsibility, respect, integrity and professional ethics. Our priority is service to students, districts, and the community who look to us for support and educational leadership.
Prevention Works Art and Media Awareness Program recognizes and supports students for promoting the positive aspects of a healthy and violence-free lifestyle through art, media literacy trainings, and awareness campaigns.
The program started with the conception of a student drug abuse prevention poster contest that came from the Prevention Education Subcommittee of the Orange County Health Care Agency (OCHCA) Advisory Board on Drug Programs in 1981. The contest was called the "Student Drug Abuse Prevention Poster Contest." In 1983, the inaugural year, 54 Orange County schools participated, and 800 posters were received.
Due to the success of that first Contest, OCHCA drug abuse administration decided to continue the Contest as an annual event. As the Contest grew in size, the name was changed to "Student Alcohol, Tobacco, and Drug Abuse Prevention Poster Contest." By 1987, the Contest was conducted jointly by the OCHCA Alcohol & Drug Education & Prevention Team (ADEPT), Orange County Substance Abuse Prevention Network (OCSAPN), and Orange County Department of Education (OCDE).
In 1996, the Contest committee added the category "Tobacco Counter Advertisements" to the Contest, in 2002, added "Alcohol Counter Advertisements", and more recently in 2007 added the "Media Prevention Posters" to encourage young people to look beyond slick advertising messages. These counter ads reveal the real truths about tobacco, alcohol, and violence use by exposing the myths and hidden messages of the ads and replacing them with the real consequences.
In 2006-2007, the program took a new direction giving greater impact to prevention. A media literacy component was added. In addition,the name was changed to Prevention Works - Art and Media Awareness Program.
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