Article written with help from the following students:Morgan Trosper, Shae Keen, Ethan Carter, Nona Wilkes, Bryan Winters, Hannah Freeman, Jalia Cotton, and Ethan Dailey
Under the direction of Jean Harper, the Winston County Self Help Cooperative Group conducted their 8th annual “Saving Rural America and Youth Conference”
The program took place at the Louisville Coliseum with a theme of “Strengthening Rural Communities through Partnerships”.
There were many programs that were presented with rotating break out sessions. FireWise
Safety, Wildlife Conservation, journalism, and DARE were among the many topics discussed in the sessions.
Morgan Trosper noted that students learned first hand the importance of wildlife at the conservation booth. Jalia Cotton noted that bobcats can be easily spotted by their spots and how these cats are essential to the wildlife system here in Mississippi. Humans have both a positive and negative impact on wildlife.
Education helps our impact to be more positive stated some of the students.
“The Winston County Firewise educated students on how to stop and prevent a fire.” reported Ethan Daily. Mason Roberts found it very interesting that Mississippi Firewise reported that Mississippi has approximately 3,300 wildfires annually that scorches more than 51,000 acres.
Officer Tonya McWhirter discussed the importance of staying away from drugs in her DARE discussion. She has been in the police force for 14 years. Officer McWhirter described how drugs cause hallucinations and even death.
The participants of these programs were 7th graders from Winston Academy, Noxapater, Eiland and Nanih Waiya. There were approximately 250 children that participated in the program.