IMPACT Ennis is on the move.

The IMPACT Ennis Coalition is under the direction of longtime community organizer Jane Mize, who urges parents and others who interact with the community’s youth to get involved with the coalition, which is cooperating with local law enforcement and education organizations, including the school district, to get the word out about the dangers of alcohol and substance abuse.

Look to the organization to provide more information in the coming days on the problem of social access to alcohol and drugs, and the legal and moral liabilities faced by parents who host drinking events for minors.

“This is such an important topic,” said Mize.  “We’re hoping people will join with other Ennis community leaders and citizens to discuss underage drinking and substance use. Let’s work together to resolve these issues and help the youth of our community realize the potential of their future.”

“The message I want to people to understand is that for this to be a true community effort, it’s going to take all of us to make it happen," Mize said.

A ribbon cutting and Business After Hours for IMPACT Ennis will be held tonight (Thursday) at the Ennis Chamber of Commerce Business board room at 5:15 p.m.

On Tuesday, Feb. 24, IMPACT Ennis invites the public to meet at the Ennis Public Library at 5:15 p.m. The organization will make decisions and choose committee chairs.

Additionally,  an essay contest sponsored by IMPACT Ennis is underway at Ennis High School. Theme for the contest is the dangers of alcohol and substance abuse for minors, and the rewards are big.

First prize is $250, second prize is $150, and third prize is $50.

Deadline to enter is Feb. 27.

The IMPACT Ennis Coalition is under the direction of longtime community organizer Jane Mize, who urges parents and others who interact with the community's youth to get involved with the coalition, which is cooperating with local law enforcement and education organizations, including the school district, to get the word out about the dangers of alcohol and substance abuse.

Look to the organization to provide more information in the coming days on the problem of social access to alcohol and drugs, and the legal and moral liabilities faced by parents who host drinking events for minors.

“This is such an important topic,” said Mize.  “We’re hoping people will join with other Ennis community leaders and citizens to discuss underage drinking and substance use. Let’s work together to resolve these issues and help the youth of our community realize the potential of their future.”

IMPACT Ennis board members include Mayor Russell Thomas, City Manager Steve Howerton, EISD public information director Henry Martinez, Ennis Police Chief John Erisman, high school student Courtney Harris, ERMC CEO Dave Anderson, Pastor Darrell Nelson, Rita Solomon, Randy Bryan Bigham, Kelly Kovar, Paul Neal and Nancy Clark.

“We just want to give our youth the best start we can for their futures. If we send them into adulthood alcohol and substance abuse-free, at least we give them a fair chance to make something good of their lives,” Mize said.

“The message I want to people to understand is that for this to be a true community effort, it’s going to take all of us to make it happen,” she said.

The event are held in conjunction with Drug Prevention Resources, Inc. of Irving, Texas. (www.drpi.com. IMPACT Ennis coordinator is Jane Mize, who can be reached at 214-399-0815 or by e-mail at jane.mize@att.net.

The parent organization, DPRI, is non-profit and funded by the Texas State Health Department, Mize said.

E-mail J.Louise at jlouise.larson@wninews.com.