Volunteers, Victims Rights, and Youth, Oh My.

The past week has been a whirlwind here at MADD Nebraska! Why, you ask? Because we recognized so many important weeks, all during the same week! The third week in April marks Volunteer Appreciation Week, Crime Victims Rights Week, and the kick-off of MADD’s PowerTalk 21 events. This means, we were crazy busy last week, but we wanted to take a moment to talk about each one of these and why they are so important to us!

Let’s start with National Volunteer Week! Our volunteers come to MADD with different backgrounds, diverse histories, and a wide variety of experiences. But, when they become part of MADD, they become part of a family. And they become part of a solution. The solution to impaired driving. Every moment volunteered takes us closer to a future with No More Victims. The amazing talents of our volunteers help in every aspect of the MADD mission. From telling stories, to teaching youth, to collecting data. When we say we couldn’t move the mission forward without our volunteers, we mean it. So, thank you to each and every one of our incredible volunteers, living the mission and making a difference.

It was also Crime Victims’ Rights Week and that is so important that to us here at MADD Nebraska. People impacted by impaired driving are victims of a horrible, violent crime. As part of our work at MADD, we help them to know the rights they have throughout the criminal justice process and ensure those rights are maintained. This year we joined with our National office encouraging victims to share their story with the #MyNameIs. Allowing others to learn the far reach of impaired driving in our communities and continuing to give a voice to the victims.

MADD Nebraska also joined in kicking off PowerTalk 21, reminding parents to start the conversation, build the relationship, and protect their kids against the dangers of underage substance use. This year, we are focusing on the #powertalk21challenge. It started last week and runs through the next month. Giving parents and teens daily activities that work to build the relationship and start the conversation. Check out our Facebook @NebraskaMADD to find some of the activities and join in at any time. We have also been in the community presenting Power of Youth and sharing our expertise to help encourage students to make safe choices when it comes to underage substance use.

What a week, right? We would have loved for all of these incredible events to be spread out so we could give each one even more recognition. But, we are so thankful we got to take a moment to focus on each of these things that are all so very close to our hearts. We also know that even though each of these things was given a short “official” time period to recognize, we will continue to honor, recognize, thank, support, talk about and work in all of these areas every day. Because they are all at the heart of the MADD mission and essential for creating a future with No More Victims.