Adapt’s Prevention and Education Program hosts Art of Prevention contest

February 19, 2019

Douglas County youth have an opportunity again this year to express themselves through art.

Adapt’s Prevention and Education Program is hosting its eighth annual Art of Prevention contest and art show. Deadline for entries is April 5.

Cati Strempel, prevention and education program manager at Adapt, says the reason the contest was started was to empower youth.

“That’s something that’s really important in our department and we believe that youth have a lot to say,” Strempel said. “They see a lot, they’re exposed to a lot and often they don’t feel they’re heard by their community and by adults, so art work is one way for them to express what they see or what they’re experiencing and to feel heard by a broad audience.”

Strempel said she is always surprised by some of the artwork when it starts coming in. Judging the artwork can be an emotional process, she said. One piece last year really made an impact on her.

“It was a challenging piece to look at about abuse, and it was a young artist and my heart was just broken that they’d even been exposed to that,” Strempel said. “It was something that had impacted them and they felt so much that they needed to express it through art.”

Some of the prevention messages include, substance abuse, child abuse and neglect, problem gambling, violence, bullying, suicide, tobacco use and general prevention.

The contest is open for any Douglas County student in grades 4 through 12, and that includes private schools or home-schooled students and each child can enter up to three pieces of art.

The students must have an entry form with each piece. The contest receives about 100 entries each year from all over Douglas County. Strempel said as organizers have tried to keep messages in the art to not only prevention-themed artwork, but also a positive message where they can speak to their community.

“We’re open to either, but our preference is positive,” she said.

The students can do any medium of art that they prefer, like recording a song or performing a play, or even a sculpture, and it just has to be portable and displayable so it can be shown somehow in the event.

The schools have entry forms and the forms are also available on the Adapt website prevention page and on Facebook.

Adapt reaches out to all of the schools in the county, or youth-serving organizations like the Boys & Girls Club or the YMCA. So the students can bring their art piece to school or their club, and it’ll be picked up by Adapt from there.

Entries may be dropped off or mailed to: Adapt Prevention & Education, 548 SE Jackson St., Roseburg, OR 97470.

All entries will be displayed at the Art of Prevention awards ceremony 5 p.m. Thursday, April 25, at the Winston Community Center. The event is open to the public.

Information: Cati Strempel at 541-492-0145 or email catis@adaptoregon.org or visit www.facebook.com/adaptprevention.