© 2018 Natural Highs    Natural Highs Community (Facebook)    Contact: avani@naropa.edu 

Thank you to City of Boulder Youth Opportunities Board (YOAB) for sponsoring Natural Highs!

FEEDBACK FROM TEENS

“Natural Highs isn’t a simple program to explain the importance of, it is my life. Natural Highs helped me be a happier person and a sober person. It taught me how to appreciate the small things and myself. It showed me my passion in herbalism which I will continue after high school. It taught me how to be a leader and how to break out of my shell. Without Natural Highs I wouldn’t have met any of the amazing members who truly changed my life for the best. Natural Highs taught me how beautiful the world is and how you can be sober and be supported and praised for it, not looked down upon in other groups.

I love being in Action Group because you personally get to help and set up awesome events while working with amazing people and help out in your community. Also, I feel as if people look up to you if you are in Natural Highs. I could rant for hours and hours, pages and pages about how important Natural Highs is to me and how I honestly don’t think I would be alive right now if it weren’t for this program. It is the most important best thing that has ever happened to me.” (New Vista Senior)

"Natural Highs has brought me out of one of the darkest most lonely and scary times in my life. It has given me a beautiful understanding of my body, my mind, and has helped me discover who I am and what path I want to take in this world. Along with that Natural Highs has given me a community and a safe open environment to express myself and learn more about who I am. This program has opened so many doors for me and brought so many new passions to my life. I envision Natural Highs becoming a revolution. It will sweep the nation because the techniques and knowledge and experiences obtained from this class are so innovative and beneficial and over all life changing. So thank you Avani and the whole Natural Highs team for changing mine and so many other peoples lives." (New Vista student)

Feedback from the anonymous evalution forms after the Natural Highs Workshops in response to the question "Would you recommend the Natural Highs Class to a friend? Why or why not?"


"Yes, it changes your life in such a great way."
I would because it is the only drug prevention program that works without scare tactics or exaggeration and it truly helps with my sobriety."
 "Yes, I think anyone who has or will do drugs should without a doubt take this class."
 "Yes. I think this course should be mandatory at all schools because it is a good environment for all to learn about the facts about drugs & alcohol so you are able to make good choices about these substances."
"Yes to everyone. This is an incredible opportunity. I feel blessed to have been able to participate. I think it shouls be a required course for BVSD… really!"
 "Everyone. Life changing!"
 "Because Natural Highs helped me stop drugs and begin a healthy life style."
 "I would because it teaches you a lot about yourself."
 "Yes! It helps understand what you are doing to your body."
 "Yes, I would suggest it to anyone who uses substances, so they can get in touch with their selves and ask themselves if that's what they need/desire."
"Yes. Of course definitely. It offers an extremely supportive environment to stay clean, as well as a source of information about topics not frequently discussed."
"Absolutely, it is one of the most life changing experiences I have ever taken part in."
"Absolutely. It’s the best class I've ever taken in my life."

More anonymous feedback from Natural Highs teens:

  • “Natural Highs allows teens to connect with each other over complex and scary topics. The safe space in this program allows teens to explore topics that are not often discussed or supported to be discussed in our mainstream culture.” (Natural Highs Peer mentor)

  • “Natural Highs saved my life and the lives of other teens I know. It is an amazing and beautiful support. The community, learning, and discussions we take part in are safe and intricate. Natural Highs helps me thrive.” (Natural Highs Action Group member)

  • “Natural Highs provides a strong sense of community which is a safe space for many teens. There is also so much to learn about these topics. Natural Highs does the best job in making it understandable and impactful. It is so important to learn about this, especially in a place with lots of weed/drug culture, and we don’t learn it anywhere else!” (Natural Highs Workshop participant)

  • “Natural Highs is a space where I feel safe and truly interested in learning, and I feel welcomed by others.”(Natural Highs Workshop participant)

 

  • “Natural Highs has created a safe space for me to be myself and I know I can be accepted. The power of this group is beyond words. To lead something so beautiful and powerful and give back to the people is the most healing experience you could have.” (Natural Highs Peer Mentor)

 

  • “Natural Highs is a beautiful program that has helped me become and stay sober. It has helped me find myself and search for something bigger than myself. I love to help and heal and Natural Highs is a perfect outlet for that. Teenagers are constantly searching for identity and drugs are often as good as a passport. Sobriety is the healthier option and I believe we should spread that message to at least educate our peers.”

  • “I feel teens have a great impact on the community. By having teen advocates against drug abuse we have a unique perspective. When teaching other teens and parents, they see us as allies.”

  • “Teens these days deal with their insecurities via drugs. Natural Highs supports teens by educating them about drugs and ways to be healthy. Natural Highs also helps teens to be comfortable in their own skin and find healthy ways to deal with their insecurities. Teens shape Natural Highs by showing that there is a community of teens that know how to have fun sober! Most teens smoke or do other drugs because they wouldn’t have friends if they didn’t. Natural Highs is an open community of friends who are sober.”

  • “I can honestly say that of all youth programs I have been involved with, Natural Highs is by far the most empowering. Through interesting courses in science and brilliant physical activities, any kid can get fully involved in the process of learning who they are and who they have the power to become. The knowledge and experience I have gained through Natural Highs has led me to create a healthy lifestyle for which I can’t be grateful enough.”

  • “I learned how to use my voice and what power can come from being sober.”

  • “I’ve learned a lot of new ways to cope with mental illness and I’ve found a new community of support.”

  • “Breaking out of my shell and putting myself out there”

  • “The amount of control and power you have over your body and mind”

  • “For anyone who is a teenager or adult the knowledge that is passed along here is truly valuable and essential for a healthy life.”

  • “You don’t have to use substances to get high and/or have an altered state experience.”

  • “I have become so much more brave and healthy.”

  • “Feeling like I have a non-biological, safe, loving and supportive family.”

  • “I think the biggest learning experience that I can take away from Natural Highs is how to take care of my body and mind and how to be the best human I can be.”

  • “I am proud that I chose to spend my time learning about herbs and my brain instead of getting high or making bad choices.”

  • “I think Natural Highs is necessary for every human because it teaches you about yourself and how to be a responsible human.”

  • “I am becoming more talkative and outgoing in group.”

  • “I am proud of reaching out more to a safe community. And becoming a leader at school.”

  • “Sobriety is amazing and something I want to keep doing for the rest of my life.”

  • “How to connect my mind to my body, how to live mindfully and in the present, how to get in touch with my emotions and sense of self.”

  • “My biggest takeaway is probably that you can have fun and live a completely fulfilling life while being sober.”

  • I learned to express myself and live more freely.”

  • “I became sober because of and for Natural Highs which is very important to me.”

  • “The community. I love how open and inspiring all the people and their experiences are. It’s an incredible sober home”

  • “Knowing that youth and adults have a safe place where they can be supported and accepted is a beautiful thing.”

  • “I learned that one’s mind is amazing and creative on its own without needing substances to discover our own true art.”

  • “We talk about topics that are very important to be able to discuss and the general environment/atmosphere of this space is deeply healing and empowering.”

  • “I created shirts with a design inspired by what we do in Natural Highs and hope to inspire other youth to create their own business ventures.”

  • “Sharing a bit of my story and experiences with damage caused by substances.”

  • “Learning how my brain works and becoming empowered in my lifestyles. I’ve also learned how to be a good leader and teacher.”

  • “Branching out and reaching more of the Boulder community. Our Open Mics have been amazing and have inspired so many people and it brought out our first record.”

  • “Being a part of a community trying to make change & educate people.”

  • “The loving and safe space of the Natural Highs Action Group has been so impactful in my life in such a short time and I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to find it.”

  • “The community is really important to me with all its vibrancy and support. It’s nice to be in a sober community. I also appreciate the self-empowerment within Natural Highs.”

  • “I take away leadership, social skills, body intuition, inner development.”

  • “Getting excited about events and the impact we have on people.”

  • “Learning how to cultivate my own leadership skills in order to promote a safe learning space”

  • “A supportive community that encourages and inspires me to do the things I love. Resources to share with friends and family in need.”

  • “There is such a large variety of things this group has to offer – from business opportunities to psychology, I would recommend it to any youth looking to expand their leadership skills and knowledge.”

  • “Learning how things are put together and how small organizations run.”

  • “The ripple effects. Even when I can’t see the outcomes. Each action/movement affects people around and then they affect others. I make a difference.”

  • “I held my ground. Learning to be firm in my actions and beliefs. We reached out to so many people and continued to offer a space of healing and learning.”

  • “Definite empowerment. Feeling important.”

  • “Getting involved in the community.”

  • “Taking control of your experience and coming to understand how to make the most of life.”

  • “Learning to teach classes”.

  • “Emotional intelligence and brain chemistry”

  • “Learning & using healthy alternatives to drugs.”

  • “Having a safe community to learn & be myself”


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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  • More Confidence

  • Public Speaking/Teaching

  • Being able to lead a group of people

  • Recruitment of peers

  • Speaking my mind

  • Presentation Skills

  • Taking the lead

  • Speaking up

  • Not give in to peer pressure

  • Being confident

  • Being social

  • Stepping in where there is a need

  • Being therapeutic towards others

  • Leading large groups

  • Taking charge of situations

  • Listening well with an open mind

  • Being confident in using my voice

  • Learning how to lead discussions and activities

  • Freedom of Expression

  • Planning events

  • Leading a group

  • I was able to speak my thoughts at meetings

  • I performed in front of 40+ people

  • I became more comfortable offering my help explaining herbs and serving tea

  • Listening to the group

  • Sharing coping mechanisms

  • Sharing knowledge of helpful and healthy herbs

  • Community supporting each other

  • Giving back to community

  • Learning how to organize & promote events

  • Non-judgmental listening

  • Individual support

  • Creating an open space

  • Greater ability to share my perspective

  • Knowledge of equity to create safe spaces

  • Learning to structure classes with meaningful & interesting curriculum.

  • Confidence & Presentation

  • Nurturing others & self

  • Time management

  • Taking charge

  • Working with others

  • Talking to a group

 

 

 

Share Your Experience/Feedback
*If you would like to submit a personal experience about Natural Highs for us to post on the website you may do so in the box on the bottom of the page. If you do not want your submission to be shared on the website just say so somewhere on the bottom of the submission. Thank you. *

If you would like to read some personal experiences from students, go to the section Our Stories.   

Students - Please Submit Your Experience With Natural Highs
(You can write anonymously or not - your response will go to Avani)

What Leadership Skills did Natural Highs helped you develop?