What started out as a problem-solving idea for my community to address the influx of heroin on our streets in 2003, is now an evidence-based prevention program impacting over 55,000 parents and children.
It was the voice of parents at town meetings and forums that helped design Reality Tour. Parents wanted a prevention program they could attend with their child to learn about the risks together. In 2003, no such program existed. The task at hand was to develop a parent/child program to relate the risks and consequences of drug misuse and offer ways to avoid experimentation. It had to be interactive, engaging and up to date on drug trends.
Reality Tour began with narrated scenes showing the consequences, interactive coping skills and hearing from youth in recovery to show addiction can happen to anyone. The response from parents was immediate and soon there was a 3-month wait to attend. Because of extensive TV news coverage, other communities were asking how they could start this program. The 501c3 nonprofit organization Community Action Network for Drugfree Lifestyle Empowerment (CANDLE, Inc) was formed.
By 2007, with Reality Tours now in other states, the need to reach evidence-based status was a priority. Through a research grant, a study conducted by the University of Pittsburgh School of Pharmacy resulted in acceptance to SAMHSA’s National Registry of Evidence-based Programs and Practices (NREPP)
Over the years, Reality Tour has evolved into an easy to replicate, sustainable prevention system with a common sense approach. Finally, communities have a way to ‘take care of their own’ when it comes to prevention.
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Press & News Articles
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Westmoreland Co. – For the past 8 years the Hempfield School District has placed an emphasis on educating families about drug prevention through partnership with the nonprofit CANDLE, Inc.’s Reality Tour. At 6th grade orientation this Thursday, the district’s three middle school schools will make an appeal to parents to take their child to one … Read more
Greensburg, PA – Mr. Riz Rizvi, General Manager of Toyota of Greensburg awarded $7,000 check to the nonprofit CANDLE, Inc. that oversees the Reality Tour parent/child drug prevention program. The funds will allow all Hempfield School District middle school families to attend the program at no cost and be eligible for $500 in gift card … Read more
BUTLER. PA Over the years title pageants have changed considerably and Mrs. Pennsylvania International pageant contestants competing this Saturday in Altoona at the Jaffa Shrine Center each have selected a meaningful platform to meet requirements. The nonprofit CANDLE, Inc. , parent to the Reality Tour Drug Prevention Program , that has educated about 50,000 parents … Read more
Reality Tour ® FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: 8/13/14 Karns City School District 724-756-2030 CANDLE Inc. 724-679-1788 NormaNorris@candleinc.org 100 Brugh Ave. Butler, PA 16001 KARNS CITY FOOTBALL TEAM READIES FOR THE 2014 SEASON WITH PUSH UPS AND DRUG PREVENTION? Deaths of six KC former players, in the years after graduation, inspires coach to take action. Butler / … Read more
HIGHMARK Blue Cross Blue Shield Grant to Provide REALITY TOUR© Drug Prevention Experience for at-Risk Youths BUTLER, PA – CANDLE, Inc., the non-profit parent organization responsible for the Reality Tour© Drug Prevention Program, has received a $5,000 grant from Highmark Blue Cross Blue Shield to reach at-risk youths ages 10-18. The grant will be used … Read more
March 1, 2016 MONROEVILLE PA – Allegheny County has recently picked up the grassroots parent & child drug prevention program Reality Tour. Gateway School District voted this past fall to purchase Reality Tour as a prevention measure for the district. Jennifer Turkowski, Assistant Principal at Gateway High School and Resource Officer, Mark Kandrack has this … Read more
BUTLER, PA – The original Butler Reality Tour Parent/Child Drug Prevention Program will now be held at Monarch Place (100 Brugh Ave.) Their first program of the year is to be held Monday, April 11 at 6 PM. Tours are held the second Monday of the month. Families with children age 10 and up may … Read more
By Jeremy Sellew What began as a run-of-the-mill school board meeting quickly turned into a heart-wrenching plea from parents asking the district to do more to fight the growing drug epidemic throughout the community. After hearing about a school district plan to create its own drug summit proposal, a standing-room-only crowd of parents urged the … Read more
By Madeline Izzo, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette The Butler County founder of an interactive drug-abuse prevention program has been asked to bring her program to Kansas City, Mo., for some national exposure. Norma Norris, director of Candle Inc., which stands for Community Action Network for Drug-Free Lifestyle Empowerment, has been invited to be a presenter at the … Read more
“Reality Tour” Exposes Teens to Reality of Substance Abuse – Behavioral Health Central – February 19, 2010
By Dennis Miller, BHC Senior Writer Classroom lectures, assembly-hall speeches and informational brochures can give teens the facts on drug and alcohol use, but fall short of offering a direct, realistic and emotional experience of drug abuse’s often devastating consequences. The interactive educational experience called Reality Tour® is designed to add that element to drug … Read more