By Dylan Rohrer, wyo4news.com
ROCK SPRINGS, WYOMING (Oct. 21, 2019) — What happens when a person drinks and drives? If you choose to break the law, what are the consequences?
These are some of the many questions addressed at the “Life R U Ready?” health fair project which began Monday at the Sweetwater Events Complex in Rock Springs. The Life RU Ready? Project is a “life-simulation” health fair for teens and parents designed to increase awareness of the consequences of the teen’s behavior, to decrease motivation to participate in risk taking behavior, and to provide new opportunities for parent-teen communication.
The project is a community-wide collaboration whose goal is to make safe and healthy choices the norm in Sweetwater County.
Attending this year’s event are pre- and teenage students throughout Sweetwater County.
This event features several different stations for students to explore. These stations are wide-ranging and cover a variety of different scenarios, including youth home, courtroom, medical, probation, accident, and much more.
The youth home station offers a look into the daily happenings of minors admitted into a youth home. It also offers information about why a minor might be admitted to a youth home, as well as some of the daily hygiene routines and chores they perform daily. This station pushes students to appreciate their home life and offers students a unique insight into an otherwise hushed topic.
The medical station gives students information about a wide variety of topics. covering sexual health, CPR and I.V. procedure. It also offers guidance about how to build strong, consensual and meaningful relationships.
Marianne Sanders volunteers as one of the workers of the mortuary station, along with her husband, Travis, who has been in the mortuary business since 1994. This station teaches students about the funeral process and gives insight into how families cope with the loss of a child or loved one. She believes that this event is extremely important because parents may not always find the time or place to teach kids about some of life’s hazards.
Sanders also hopes this event will help kids to open their eyes to the impact the loss of a child can have on not only family but an entire community.
Senior Lieutenant Klief Guenther is one of the assisting officers at the accident station, which teaches kids the dangers of driving, not wearing a seat belt, and driving impaired. Guenther hopes that seeing the consequences of riding in the car without a seat belt or driving impaired will help kids to make better choices.
Guenther has served for 21 years and said that one of the most frequent issues he sees in his daily work is not using seat belts. “Over 30% of people in Wyoming today do not use a seat belt,” he said.
He hopes that students being able to see first hand the effects of impaired driving and driving without a seat belt will “plant the seed” for them to make smart decisions regarding their driving safety in the future.
Randall Reddon, a seventh-grade student at Rock Springs Junior High school, said he finds this event useful for him and his fellow students.
“They teach you about things you will have to face in the future, especially peer pressure,” Reddon said.
Reddon also said this event was important for kids who struggle to communicate well with their parents, as they are taught many child-to-parent communication skills.
The “Life R U Ready?” health fair continues Tuesday, Oct. 22 and Wednesday, Oct. 23 at the Sweetwater Events Complex.