The D.A.R.E. Works Society was established in 1998 as a branch society of the De Winton Rural Crime Watch Association then, in the spring of 2004, the Society established itself as a registered society and registered charity in its own right under the name D.A.R.E. Works Foothills Society.
Since inception, the Society has worked in partnership with the RCMP detachments in Okotoks, High River and Turner Valley. The Society’s original goal was to ensure the D.A.R.E. Program would be delivered in every grade six classroom in the MD of Foothills. The Society struck an agreement the RCMP to designate a full-time police officer to coordinate and deliver the program in exchange for funding of the position by the Society and eight stakeholders (Foothills School Division, the MD of Foothills, the municipalities of High River, Okotoks, Black Diamond, Turner Valley, Longview and the Strathcona Tweedsmuir School). The separate school division in the MD of Foothills chose not to participate in the program at that time.
In subsequent years, the Society expanded the D.A.R.E. program to include delivery of a follow-up and reinforcement program to grade eight students. The expansion entailed hiring and training a D.A.R.E. Officer to deliver the program part-time. In 2006 the Society further expanded its program to include a Parent Program, offering parents information on drug-related issues, as well as guidance on topics such as bullying and safe internet use. Initially the Parent Program was fairly popular but interest in it faded and the Society suspended the program.
Following a successful pilot project at Joe Clark and Spitzee Schools in High River in the spring of 2010, the Society shifted the program in 2010-2011 school year to grade five and grade seven students in all but Strathcona Tweedsmuir school.
In the spring of 2012 the Society decided to suspend the middle school program effective 2012-2013 school year. Officer Melanie Glanville of Okotoks Municipal Enforcement was appointed D.A.R.E. Coordinator. Melanie delivers the elementary school curriculum to all elementary schools in the Foothills School Division.
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