NEW YORK: Major League Baseball and the Partnership for a Drug-Free America launched a grassroots campaign, including a microsite at drugfree.org/playhealthy, to educate teens about performance-enhancing substances (PES).
The objective of the effort is to point out the risk of using such substances. The focus of the direct-to-teen outreach will be online, said Hallie Deaktor, director of public affairs for the Partnership, as teens often go online for information about PES.
In addition to the microsite, which includes a new Coaches Corner blog, to be authored by high school and college coaches, the Partnership intends to increase its presence on social networks like Facebook.
The campaign, which launched on September 17, is reaching out to “people who influence student athletes,” Deaktor said, including coaches, parents, and other teens.
It is also partnering with affiliates, including the National Association of School Nurses and other nonprofit organizations working on a local level.
“They have incredible access to schools, athletics associations, and coaches,” Deaktor added.
The initiative is targeting one media group: high school and college newspapers.
“Teens look up to sports heroes, but they also look to each other, so we're reaching to that level,” said Deaktor. “This [grassroots-based] campaign isn't going to give us those huge media relations numbers, but that's not what we're looking for.”
USA Today, however, covered the campaign's launch.
The Partnership is working on this campaign and other projects with CooperKatz.