Representatives from the Oklahoma Office of the Drug Enforcement Administration awarded Light of Hope with Community Drug Prevention Award during the kick off of their Red Ribbon Month rally.
Light of Hope was one of two organizations chosen for this international recognition.
Light of Hope (LOH) prioritizes drug education and prevention for children and parents. In September, 2019, LOH partnered with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) for the creation of their school education program L.E.A.D., which is offered free of charge to all schools.
The five-to-seven week courses offer science-based, age-appropriate education that is statistically demonstrated to reduce drug use.
During the first six months of the program, Light of Hope was able to reach 7,620 students through assemblies and in-classroom education.
LOH Founder Layla Freeman said, "Students have heard the 'Don't Do Drugs,' methodology before. We believe it is crucial that students understand the science behind addiction, rather than 'don't do drugs.' We give students the tools they need to make an educated decision for themselves."
Resident Agent in Charge of the Tulsa Resident Office in the Dallas Field Division, David King, nominated Light of Hope for the award.
"Seven educators have spent hundreds of hours behind the scenes providing this curriculum to our schools and educating our youth," King said. "Thank you to the instructors who went in our schools. Without them, it wouldn't be possible."
Assistant Special Agent in Charge for the State of Oklahoma John Scott referred to LOH and the L.E.A.D. program as, "a force multiplier for DEA."
The award came with a plaque and $2,000.
"As the pandemic continues, our LOH/DEA team is diligently creating various avenues in which our powerful initiative will move forward," Freeman said. "We have implemented social media outlets, television station partnerships and additional platforms, to allow easy access for our schools and students to join virtually."
"We must bring HOPE to our children and families. It is imperative that our LOH/DEA Drug Education Program infiltrate schools throughout our state," Freeman said.