Phone: (204) 925-5643
Champions is a "Lifestyles" cross mentoring program developed by the Manitoba High Schools Athletic Association. The goal of this program is to have senior high school student leaders visit grade 5 classes and make the students aware of peer pressure and the affect that it has on any decisions they make. It is designed to help the high school students, and in turn, the elementary students develop life coping skills.
The Champions program is a two day "cross mentoring" workshop held annually. Approximately 100 student leaders from Manitoba High Schools will be invited to participate in this workshop. Speakers will include: a representative from the Behavioural Health Foundation, a member of the RCMP, a speaker from the University of Manitoba, as well as a couple of teachers who will explain lesson plans, ice breakers, and how to make presentations to the elementary students. The RCMP officer will discuss questions commonly asked by grade 5 students and the speaker from the University of Manitoba will discuss drugs in sport and everyday life as well as personal consequences from drug usage. The representative from the Behavioural Health Foundation will tell it "like it really is" through his own experiences.
The high school student leaders will make contact with an area elementary school and speak to the elementary students five times within a three-month period. Some of topics that these students will speak on include: peer pressure, communication skills, making the right choices, drugs and alcohol, etc. The purpose of the high school students going into the grade 5 class is to act as role models. Studies have shown that students in the local high school can have as much impact on the young grade 5 students as professional athlete does. The elementary students can relate more readily to the high school student as they play sports or participate in activities closer to home.
The main objective of the Champions program is to prevent substance abuse by providing students with positive peer role models through cross-mentoring, to spread the message that you can succeed in life without using drugs and alcohol, and to attempt to identify some of the problems, for example peer pressure, that cause young people to resort to drug use. Student leaders will be taught how to present their lesson plan, how to develop "ice breakers" and how to create skits to get the message across.
High school students must pledge to be drug and alcohol free during the three or four months that they will be presenting to the elementary school students.
Students interested in participating in the Champions program should contact their Physical Education teacher or Guidance counselor. Information has been sent out to the schools. Additional information on Champions is available on the MHSAA website www.mhsaa.ca or by calling 925-5643.