Over the weekend, there was a pow-wow (celebration) put on for the students. There were various competitions of dance, drums, games and even flute playing. The kids were competing for gift certificates to local stores where they could shop for soft drinks, coffees, chips, etc. Many of the kids came away with prizes valued at $10-20.
Our boarding school campus is a closed campus which means students are not allowed on or off without adult supervision or being signed out by a close relative. I was out shopping yesterday for a couple of the students who had asked me to get them some things with their gift certificates. When I went into the store I noticed what I thought were a couple of our students at the cash register but unaccompanied by any staff member. A minute later a staff member came in and the students went out the front door.
It turns out the kids had been AWOL from the campus and were attempting to buy cough medicine with the gift certificates they had received. They were going to try to get high off of the prizes they had won.
I don’t know what it’s like in your area but we have a battle ground here with drugs and alcohol. Kids are always looking for the next way to get high. I have to keep my hand sanitizer locked up so kids don’t drink it. I always have to be on the lookout that something I mean to be completely innocent is taken and abused for students looking for the next high.
I know these are just symptoms of kids looking for something to take away the pain they’re going through. I continue to witness to and pray for students to come to know the One who will take away their pain and fill them with the love they so desperately are searching for.