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The Beginning Awareness Basic Education Studies (BABES) program is a primary prevention program for children, grades K-2nd. BABES provides factual information on alcohol and other drugs, introduces decision making and coping skills, and works to increase each child’s self-awareness. The goal of BABES is to help children enjoy happy, health, drug-free lives. The program incorporates seven fun puppets to introduce factual, non-judgmental information on alcohol and other drugs, decision making and coping skills. BABES is delivered in seven lessons, usually once a week.

Any school in Delaware County (public or private) may request the BABES program by calling Holcomb Behavioral Health Systems. Trained volunteers and staff present BABES to over 500 children each year. In the fall, information is sent to every elementary school in Delaware County. Trained BABES presenters can bring this program to your school at no cost to you, thanks to funding provided by the Delaware County Office of Behavioral Health, Division of Drug and Alcohol.

The BABES Lessons:

#1 Self Image and Feelings
This lesson teaches that it is important to recognize and communicate our feelings. Introduces “self image” and teaches that we are all special.

#2 Decision Making and Peer Pressure
Teaches how to recognize peer pressure and presents ways of dealing with it. This lesson teaches steps for responsible decision making.

#3 Coping Skills
This lesson teaches that some things can be changed and some cannot. It also touches on the fact that “coping” is taking care of an unhappy situation.

#4 Alcohol and Other Drug Information
Lesson 4 explains that alcohol is a drug that affects mind and body. It also talks about the fact that drinking alcohol is against the law until the age of 21 and that it is always against the law to use illegal drugs.

#5 Getting Help
It’s OK to fail at first. You can always go back and try again. This lesson teaches that it’s very important to ask for help when you really need it.

#6 Help for the Child Living in a Chemically Dependent Home
This lesson teaches that it is wrong for people to hurt children or touch them in ways that makes them uncomfortable. If this happens, we can tell someone we trust.

#7 Wrap Up
The previous lessons are reviewed and children receive a Certificate of Completion of the BABES program.

Comments from Parents:

“I feel that it is important that she hear about it both at home and school as it reinforces the issue.”

“I feel it is important to teach children early about drugs, alcohol, etc. so they can make good decisions when confronted with a difficult choice and/or peer pressure.”

“He related stories from the program that helped him understand peer pressure and that drugs are bad.”

Comments from Teachers:

“I really enjoyed the BABES program. The kids learn a lot of information–they talk about the key words and puppets throughout the remainder of the year.”

“I really liked the program. It is very informative and a fun way for the children to learn.”

“The children enjoyed watching the puppets and the information was on their level.”

Interested in Becoming a BABES Volunteer?
BABES Volunteers are always needed to become BABES presenters. Volunteer presenters are provided with training and continuing support from our agency. The requirements are ability to read well, be non-judgmental, transport oneself to school sites and of course, enjoy working with children.

Who can be a BABES Volunteer?
Counselors, teachers, parents, police, clergy, scout leaders, elders, business people, and youth can be BABES presenters. If you are a warm, caring, non-judgmental person who is sensitive to the needs of young children, you can be a BABES presenter.

For additional information, please contact: Cindylou Shaffer at 484-444-0412 or by email at: