Comprised of businessmen and women, parents, celebrities, prevention and education experts and many other individuals, some of whom have themselves overcome addiction, Friends of Narconon, Intl (FON) was originally established in the early 1980’s to provide youth with drug-free role models and promote anti-drug messages at special events, FON became especially known for its celebrity softball games. Incorporated in 1995 as a public benefit non-profit, charitable organization, Friends of Narconon, Intl. Our goal is to provide easy-to-implement prevention that works.
The Friends of Narconon mission is to drastically reduce drug abuse by effectively educating youth and adults on the truth about drugs thus creating a decline in the demand for drugs overall. To assist in this effort FON brings drug education to the youth, educators, and parents of the world through engaging video, materials and interactive activities.
No one is immune to the escalating drug problem. Whether you or someone you know has been affected by drug abuse, its damaging effects are long lasting and a plague on humanity. To address this, all levels of society must send correct and consistent social messages. Encouraging pro-survival actions must be part and parcel to family life and neighborhoods as well as the school community.
But we are not currently sending consistent messages. Anti-drug and pro-sobriety messages have again fallen off the national radar screen, perceived risk of drug use is falling and with that use is again on the rise. Much tobacco and alcoholic beverage marketing is designed to appeal to youth while we make it a privilege of adulthood to smoke, drink and in some States use marijuana. The entertainment industry glamorizes both licit and illicit drug use, including under-age use, in movies, music and fiction.
Through our programs, FON aims to foster and contribute to the broader dialog that is necessary if we are to correctly and frequently enough present a message that can counter the often-glamorized pro-drug lifestyle, illicit or not. We aim to help individuals inspect social behaviors and arrive at their own conclusions.
Youth need every opportunity to inspect social behaviors and learn to think for themselves, even look at conflicting dichotomies.
What works is an approach that acknowledges and influences how youths make social decisions:
- One that provides information and discusses consequences but does so in a way that is appreciated by youths faced with often-conflicting messages. Scare tactics never worked.
- One that presents complicated and detailed biological data in simpler terms and engaging formats, even stories.
- One that fosters open communication among our youths and strengthens their skills and ability to communicate with others.
- And, one that consults each individual’s understanding with interactive work while respecting their uniqueness and personal sense of truth.
For most youth, schools are a cornerstone in their community, a place not just to participate in the transfer of knowledge but also to develop social mores. School bonding and healthy relationships are among the key protective factors along with connectedness to families and community.
Initially, FON provided video-based programs and accompanying materials to augment existing school-based prevention curricula. These materials and teachers’ guides are currently in routine use at approximately 9600 schools across the United States, from elementary level through high school.
In 2006, Narconon International and Friends of Narconon developed an 8-session prevention curriculum for high school students and completed a non-randomized controlled outcomes trial among nearly 1000 students. Based on positive outcomes, the Narconon organizations finalized curriculum materials and program support. Currently, approximately 500 schools use this curriculum.
Friends of Narconon is licensed by a senior administrative organization, Narconon International, to use its trademarks and works closely with the organization to disseminate the Narconon Drug Education program. Narconon International, was incorporated as a 501(c)3 non-profit 1972.