Our Mission Statement
"To reduce teen alcohol, marijuana and other drug use by empowering parents with factual information and the tools to support their children in making healthy and safe choices."
“Be the Influence” or "BTI" is a parenting program which seeks to reduce the unacceptably high rates of teen binge drinking, marijuana and other drug use throughout Marin County and the greater Bay Area. Our rates of substance use are among the highest in the state and nation - both among youth and adults alike.
The premise of our program is that parents have more influence with their teens than they think they do. Be the Influence features the following:
Online Parent Directories. Each parent who makes the BTI Commitment is added to our online Parent Lists. The Parent Lists contain contact information such as cell phone numbers and email addresses of participating parents and enable parents to reach out to one another. By using the Parent List, when your child goes to a party, gathering or sleepover at a friend's house, you'll be able to verify your child's whereabouts and ensure there will be adequate supervision.
There is a combined Parent List for all 5 schools in the Tamalpais HS Union District and San Domenico. There is also a Parent List for St. Ignatius parents. These valuable resources are on a special password protected pages. They may be found on this website under the heading “Parent Lists".
There are also separate Parent Lists for Branson and Marin Catholic which may be accessed separately via the special links provided by those schools (Branson uses InstaTeam and Marin Catholic has a separate link to its Parent Lists). These Parent Lists are not accessible by other schools.
Newsletters. BTI Parents receiving bi-monthly Newsletters throughout the school year with information about various drugs, parenting tips and other resources and notice of upcoming educational events. For excerpts from past newsletters, visit our "Blog".
It takes a Village! As a BTI Parent, you can take comfort in the fact that YOU ARE NOT ALONE in dealing with the tricky issues surrounding keeping our teens healthy and safe from the harmful effects of alcohol, marijuana and other drugs. It truly takes a village!
TAM DISTRICT CAMPUS SAFETY ANONYMOUS TIP LINES
Parents and students may call confidential tip lines and leave an anonymous message with any information relating to the health and safety of students, including alcohol and other drug use and/or dealing on campus.
Here are the numbers to call:
Please Join Us! We encourage those of you who haven’t participated in Be the Influence yet to consider doing so and joining our community of parents. Parenting teens is a challenging job and there is no way to control every aspect of teens’ lives, but we can control what we do as adults. With your participation, we can successfully and positively "Be the Influence" in our teen’s lives with respect to alcohol, marijuana and other drug use.
History of Be The Influence SF
Be the Influence was created in 2010 by the Redwood High School PTSA. Over the next few years, Tam and Drake High Schools joined BTI. In 2016, The Branson School, San Domenico, Tamiscal and San Andreas High Schools adopted BTI in their schools. We continue to expand! In 2017, Marin Catholic and St. Ignatius joined. It is expected that additional Marin and San Francisco high schools will be joining BTI in the coming year. If your school is interested in joining, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Together with the Twin Cities Coalition for Healthy Youth, the Ross Valley Healthy Community Collaborative and Mill Valley AWARE, BTI seeks to improve the health, safety and well-being of our community by reducing teen alcohol, marijuana and other drug use, including:
- Easy access by teens to alcohol, marijuana and other drugs;
- Parties and gatherings at homes (as well as rented venues such as community centers, hotel rooms, clubs and party buses) involving teen use of alcohol, marijuana and other drugs;
- Binge drinking;
- Driving under the influence of alcohol, marijuana or other drugs; and
- Prescription drug abuse.
What Else Can Parents Do?
After joining BTI, parents should consistently take the simple steps outlined in the BTI Parent Commitment and also take the following measures:
- Talk to your teens early and often about the risks of teen alcohol and drug use, emphasizing your family values, consequences for use and facts around teen use (check out our Newsletters for information about specific drugs).
- Take every opportunity to get to know your child’s friends and their parents and through the BTI Parent Lists. This enables parents to call each other, verify the whereabouts of their teens and/or confirm parental supervision of parties and gatherings.
- Parents may gather their teens' friends' contact information through My Student’s Phone Tree (included in a sample Family Agreement which is also useful).
- Pick and choose from these additional Parenting tips.
- Be a good role model with respect to your own substance use and remember your kids are watching you! This may be the most important tip of all.