Local parents are invited to an event Saturday intended to educate about the current realities of underage drinking and drug use at house parties. Sponsored by the Santa Monica Police Department (SMPD) and City of Santa Monica and hosted by CLARE Foundation, the Westside Impact Project and Straight Up Reality Improv, in conjunction with the Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District (SMMUSD), the #ItsTooEasy Reality Party is a mock high school party where parents and other adults will get a glimpse into what can really go on at underage get-togethers.
It is scheduled to take place Saturday, April 25 from 2 pm to 7 pm in Santa Monica.
According to its organizers, the Reality Party is meant to help promote social change regarding underage binge drinking, marijuana use, impaired driving, and prescription drug misuse.
“In my experience, people either view teenage drinking and drug use as a rite of passage, or they aren’t aware about the amount of exposure and peer pressure youth experience when it comes to drugs and alcohol,” said Brenda Simmons, Director of the Westside Impact Project, which is a county-funded effort to reduce alcohol-related problems in Santa Monica.
“The goal of the #ItsTooEasy Reality Party is to create an opportunity for parents, administrators and community leaders to come together to discuss how we can better protect our youth from the misuse and abuse of drugs and alcohol.”
At the Reality Party, parents and other adults will engage in a 30-minute walk through of a simulated high school party. Youth from Santa Monica will act out scripted yet realistic scenes that depict overindulgent drinking games, the relentless peer pressure to binge drink, and the availability and accessibility of popular drugs.
Following the mock party, tour participants will attend a debriefing session with a panel of parents, youth, educational administrators, and mental health professionals to discuss what they observed and to review possible strategies for creating change around underage drinking and drug use.
Officials from the City of Santa Monica and the SMPD said they joined in hosting the #ItsTooEasy Reality Party because they wanted to contribute to a cohesive community solution.
The 3 pm tour will have a Spanish translator on hand. For more information about the event, or to register for a tour, visit www.WestsideImpactProject.org/realityparty.
The event’s location will be provided at the time of registration.