Red Ribbon Week good time to start family conversation

Show your personal commitment to a drug-free lifestyle by wearing a red ribbon during National Red Ribbon Week, Oct. 23-31. The theme of this year’s campaign is “Be Happy. Be Brave. Be Drug Free.”

The mission of the Red Ribbon Campaign is to present a unified and visible commitment towards the creation of a drug-free America. It is an ideal way for people and communities to show their support against drug use.

An increase in drug use and drug overdoses has occurred during the COVID-19 pandemic. Youth whose parents talk with them regularly about the risks of using drugs are 42% less likely to use drugs, yet only a quarter of teens report having these conversations. National Red Ribbon Week is a great excuse to start the conversation.

Visit to learn more about National Red Ribbon Week including a photo contest and pledge, and get tips for talking to your kids about drugs.

The life you save may be that of your child or a dear friend.

While COVID-19 has made getting red ribbons out in the community difficult, there are some activities families can do: 

• Make your own red ribbons from holiday or birthday ribbons to wear during the week

• Put a red ribbon on your house, mailbox, lamppost or outside light

• Post pictures of your ribbon-wearing on your social media accounts and share the NRRW website

• Enter a photo in the NRRW photo contest

• Sign the NRRW pledge (for parents and youth)

• Encourage family, friends and neighbors to participate

For more information about talking to your children about drug use, contact Cynthia Shifler a or visit

Kelly N. Ward, M.B.A.

Special Assistant to the Health Officer

Wicomico County Health Department