High school youth across Northeast Iowa are joining these groups to work on many initiatives to prevent and end alcohol, tobacco, and other drug use and abuse. Their efforts—such as Red Ribbon Week, the Great American Smokeout, Drug Facts Week, Through with Chew Week, and Kick Butts Day—promote awareness and education among their peers and community.

Students in any of the schools where a group has been established can join. Below are the currently operating groups. Contact details are listed. To join, you can show up at the next meeting, or email the school contact to share your interest in joining. If your school is not listed, contact our team to let us know!

Each group has control over what initiatives they want to focus on and how they’ll raise awareness for that cause. Below are some of the trainings and events that groups may attend.


EWALU Leadership Day | This day-long event focuses on tobacco-use prevention. It allows students to build good relationships between other schools and strengthen their own high school group, these students can be more effective in encouraging their peers to be tobacco-free.


During small breakout sessions, the students learned about Youth Advocacy and Tobacco 101 through these sessions and trainings:

    • ISTEP (Iowa Students for Tobacco Education and Prevention) Each school’s members spend time planning events for the school year, such as street marketing events. These very visual events promote tobacco awareness and education among their peers. Visit ISTEP on Facebook and Twitter to see what groups are up to.
    • Tobacco Education | This training covers the risks of tobacco use. After this training, the high school students then visit elementary/middle school classrooms to give prevention presentations, lead activities related to what they have learned, and be positive role models to the younger students.

  Team building is another big theme of the Leadership Day. Through the EWALU ropes course, students are given leadership opportunities to sustain and help their school groups flourish.


EWALU Leadership Day

To join your school’s group, contact the School Sponsor for the next meeting details.
School Group Name School Sponsor
Decorah TATU | Teens Against Alcohol and Tobacco Use Liz Fox, English Teacher
Crestwood HEROES | Helping Explain Risks of Every Substance Trish Hartman, Guidance Counselor
Ed-Co YODA | Youth Opposing Destructive Actions Morgan Weaver, Guidance Counselor
Lansing Kee High Youth Power Jeannine Hisel, Guidance Counselor
Maquoketa Valley MVTEL | Maquoketa Valley Teens Eliminating Lies Mary Ries, School Nurse
North Fayette Valley NFV Group | Name of group in transition Teresa Burrack
Postville Student Ambassadors Susie Schlein, Spanish Teacher
Riceville Name in transition Michelle Berentsen, School Nurse and Michelle Dohlman, Guidance Counselor
South Winneshiek SODA | Students Opposed to Drugs and Alcohol Jessica Peters, English Teacher

Visit SODA’s Website

Turkey Valley YODA | Youth Opposed to Drugs and Alcohol Rhonda Drilling, Success Coordinator
Waukon SWAT | Students working Against tobacco Brian Hilsabeck, Asst Principal
West Central West Central Tobacco Coalition Steve Milder, Guidance Counselor
West Delaware TADA | TEENS AGAINST DRUGS AND ALCOHOL Kathy Naughton, WDHS Science

Contact the Team

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