Author Archives: SafeLaunch

Every Child Soars at “Positive Altitude Day”

Children get caught in the middle when bad things happen in their family… things like drug abuse, alcoholism, domestic violence, homelessness, or mental illness caused by drug abuse and addiction can derail a young person’s chance for a productive and meaningful life.

In many such homes, struggling parents abuse or neglect their children severely enough for county officials to remove the children and place them into foster homes. As sad as that is, there is hope. When community partners support nonprofits, they help provide a protective factor for children’s health and well-being.

“Positive Altitude Day” is a youth-focused, inspirational event sponsored by the California Capital Airshow that exemplifies this spirit of shared social responsibility. This year, hundreds of excited young people from all over the region experienced a fun and educational day of hands-on learning and exploring Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Mathematics (STEAM) thanks to support from their partners, including Sacramento Jet Center, Sacramento County, City of Rancho Cordova, Van de Pol Petroleum, Mach 5 Aviation, Aerojet Rocketdyne, Dr. Pepper Snapple, Jelly Belly, ReCreate, and SafeLaunch.

Thanks to the generous support of our SafeLaunch sponsors and the California Capital Airshow, SafeLaunch held its 27th Flight Above Addiction interactive exhibit at this year’s Positive Altitude event, which took place on Sunday, May 21, at Mather Airfield.

As always, Commander Cuff told each young artist that a great life is like a great flight, which can be achieved by making a plan, picking a destination (career) and going straight for it, and keeping their brain healthy by avoiding intoxicating drugs and alcohol.

All of the kids we met had a positive attitude, which will give them positive altitude in life. Please enjoy the video of the event.

Hope Takes Flight with SafeLaunch at Wings Over Fullerton 2017

The SafeLaunch co-founders felt excited but pensive on their way to Fullerton, California for this 26th SafeLaunch Flight Above Addiction aviation event, taking place the day before Mother’s Day. Carrying not only art supplies, they were bringing an important, hopeful message for families.

The names of 85 young people who died from drugs and/or alcohol have now been permanently affixed under the wings of the plane that is donated to this important prevention mission. Their life stories, shared by their parents, are an integral part of the SafeLaunch mission. While children painted their dreams on the plane and young parents learned about the risk of addiction to developing brains, our “Wing Parents” were in their communities across the country anticipating with heavy hearts how to get through another holiday without their child. To these mothers and fathers we say thank you, and take solace knowing that your child is flying to help protect children from addiction and parents from grief.

SafeLaunch shares the science of addiction risk and the stories of young people whose lives were cut too short with the belief that informed parents will be equipped to do everything possible to protect their children from the preventable disease of addiction. It’s not possible to regulate, enforce or treat our way out of this epidemic that killed over 55,000 Americans last year, but we can protect children from early exposure… where 90% of the disease begins.

Click here to learn more about Wind Beneath Our Wings. Donate to our mission here.

2017 SafeLaunch Media $500 Video Contest Winners!

On April 18, 2017, nine Santa Barbara Unified School District (SBUSD) secondary student finalists and their teams were recognized for their successful interpretation of the contest theme, How I Cope — What I Do When Life Gives Me Lemons, to the delight of their families, teachers and friends in the Santa Barbara Unified School District Board Room.

Click the image above for the slideshow.

The $500 1st Place Award went to Santiago Bailey Musacchio from Santa Barbara Junior High for “The Theater”, the $250 2nd Place Award went to Max Koenen from Santa Barbara High School for “How I Cope”, with the $100 3rd Place Award going to Larissa Mehlig from Goleta Valley Junior High for “Two Roads”. Honorable Mentions were awarded to Cynthia Lopez from Goleta Valley Junior High for “The Pill Bottle” and Gilbert Regalado from Santa Barbara High for “Drugs Are Bad”. Julia Barbieri Low, Ryan Ino, and Kenny Motolinio from La Cumbre Junior High School, and Karina Trejo from La Cumbre Junior High received Leadership Awards. The finalists’ films are available for viewing on the SafeLaunch YouTube channel.

After the film screening and before the winners were announced, motivational mindfulness coach Dave Mochel from Applied Attention reminded attendees that the behaviors we practice are the ones we’ll improve. Practicing mindfulness and gratitude are healthy, anxiety-reducing coping strategies available to everyone.

Teachers Rich Lashua from Santa Barbara Junior High and Bill Gourley from Goleta Valley Junior High and parent attendees received raffle prizes donated by event sponsors Paradise Cafe, Beachside Bar Cafe, Deckers Brands and DCH Lexus Santa Barbara.

A special appreciation goes to SBUSD Assistant Superintendent of Student Services Frann Wageneck for her commitment to all students, and her support of the district-wide parent education events presented in partnership with SafeLaunch during the 2016-17 school year.

The SafeLaunch mission is to reduce adolescent exposure to alcohol, tobacco, marijuana and other drugs because during development, the brain is up to 600% more susceptible to the disease of addition. To help spread the word and change the world, take the SafeLaunch Parent Pledge!