Scientologist Shows the Difference One Person Can Make with the Truth About Drugs
Scientologist Maxine Chapman became a drug prevention activist after The Truth About Drugs gave her daughter the tools to help a friend
Scientologist Maxine Chapman first noticed the impact of the Truth About Drugs education and prevention initiative when she watched The Truth About Drugs—Real People, Real Stories documentary with her 11-year-old daughter. The daughter was so impressed by what she saw, she talked a friend out of experimenting with marijuana.
“I realized if more parents shared this information with their kids, they would stand a better chance to make correct decisions,” she says.
Determined to make these resources broadly available, Chapman obtained copies of the DVD from her local Church of Scientology, which supports the initiative. She began distributing copies to schools and the health and sheriff’s departments. She also displayed copies of the Truth About Drugs in her hair salon for clients to pick up and read.
Two years ago, she introduced the Truth About Drugs to one of her salon clients, the warden of a nearby correctional institution, who showed the documentary for a group of the inmates on movie night at the prison. The warden was amazed at the response and asked Chapman to conduct a seminar for the prisoners.
From a pilot program involving 14 women in 2010, the prison expanded the program to full implementation of the Truth About Drugs curriculum. More than 440 inmates have since graduated, and those who complete the program provide it to other inmates as peer facilitators.
“Thanks to the Truth About Drugs class, I have learned that we all need somebody to believe in us more than we believe in ourselves,” wrote one graduate of the program. “We all need people who will push us up. There are enough people trying to push us down in life. We find meaning in life when confronted with a hopeless situation. It is when you transform a personal tragedy into a triumph that you are a true winner.”
An inmate, who had never taken drugs herself, realized how important it is to help others stay away from them: “I will use this information as a platform to help deter the youth in my community from using drugs.”
Another peer facilitator of the program who is in prison for committing a robbery to procure drugs described what she gained from the Truth About Drugs program: “The facts and statistical information provided blew my mind. The class changed my life so dramatically. It has given me a passion to want to share the truth with others. I want everyone to know the dangers of drugs. I feel everyone incarcerated should have the opportunity to take this course—it’s truly a life-changing experience.”
Chapman continues to share the Truth About Drugs with her clients for their own use and to educate their children. She has made tremendous impact in the lives of many in her community, simply by telling people about the program, something she says is easy and that anyone can do.
“This kind of volunteering makes me feel that I am of value to society,” Chapman says. “It makes me feel good that I have helped someone. I believe that if we were to eradicate drugs from society, we would empty out the jails and prisons. That would make a better world for all of us to live in.”
Originally from Edinburgh, Scotland, Chapman moved to the Tampa Bay area in 1999. She has been a volunteer using the Truth About Drugs program since 2006.
The Church of Scientology has published a new brochure, Scientology: How We Help—The Truth About Drugs, Creating a Drug-Free World, to meet requests for more information about the drug education and prevention initiative it supports. To learn more or to read a copy of the brochure, visit the Scientology website at www.scientology.org/antidrug.
Scientology Founder L. Ron Hubbard wrote, “The planet has hit a barrier which prevents any widespread social progress—drugs and other biochemical substances. These can put people into a condition which not only prohibits and destroys physical health but which can prevent any stable advancement in mental or spiritual well-being.”
The Church of Scientology supports the Truth About Drugs, one of the world’s largest nongovernmental drug education and prevention campaigns. It has been conclusively proven that when young people are provided with the truth about drugs—factual information on what drugs are and what they do—usage rates drop commensurately.