GASP's Youth Peer Advocate recognized with 'Good Neighbor Award'

Groton — Groton Alliance for Substance Abuse Prevention has announced in a news release that recent Fitch High School graduate Robert McDade Jr., who serves as GASP's Youth Peer Advocate, is the winner of the 2019 Good Neighbor Award.

The award was created six years ago to recognize leaders in the community whose actions promote improved health and prevention of adolescent substance abuse.

“I enjoy doing things that help the community," McDade, who also holds a leadership role in the City of Groton Police Cadets, said in a statement. "It’s important for teens to know that most of us don’t drink or use drugs, and that it’s not cool.”

GASP Coordinator Carolyn Wilson said in a statement that one of McDade's standout moments this year was when he spoke at a Town Council meeting about a proposed ordinance.

"Taking risks and getting outside of your comfort zone in the name of civic engagement is admirable," she said. "When young people discover what their strengths are they can blossom into amazing young adults. When teens fill their time with activities that satisfy their mind and spirit, they won’t look to other negative behaviors to feel good. Purpose can be prevention."

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