ok County Community Coalition and Reduced Underage Drinking Initiative is sponsoring a mini-conference on March 3 at Crook County High School to address the issues of how we view youth in our community and how all of us can make a difference in a youth's life.
   The highlight of the conference is nationally renowned keynote speaker, Mervlyn Kitashima. Kitashima is a district coordinator for the Parent-Community Networking Centers in Hawaii's Department of Education.
   A participant in the "Kauai Longitudinal Study on Resilience," she shares a very motivating account of the factors that contributed to her own ability to overcome the odds and leads her audience to discover how all our youth are really "at promise" rather than "at risk."
   Local individuals who have heard Kitashima speak comment that her presentation is exceptionally motivating, professionally and personally.
   A local school counselor states that "the information she shares made me laugh and cry at the same time and helped me face the challenges of relating to young people with a new perspective."
   The conference will also provide the opportunity for participants to experience their choice of workshops during the day.
   Workshop options include:
   * Trauma Nurses
    Talk Tough
   * Peer Court
   * Tobacco Awareness
    and Education programs
   * Resources
   * Not My Kid panel
   * Juvenile Drug Court
   * Service Learning
   * and a small group with Kitashima.
   Local agencies will also provide resource and information tables covering a wide variety of topics including new driving law restrictions, safe driving tips for newly licensed drivers, teen pregnancy prevention, substance abuse prevention, etc.
   Don't miss this opportunity to explore the possibilities, potential, and promise possessed by every child, even in the face of adversity. Find out how each of us CAN make a difference in a youth's life.
   The conference is scheduled for Saturday, March 3 at the Crook County High School. Resource tables, coffee, and registration begin at 9 a.m. The entire event, including lunch and childcare, is free to all Crook County residents.
   To pre-register or for more information call Lynn Gillespie or Melody Bustillos 416-1095 or 447-3260.
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