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Striking a chord

Roxanna Thompson
Northern News Services

Fort Providence (Dec 01/06) - A country singer's personal battle with drugs and alcohol is helping some students in Fort Providence to reconsider their own choices.

Steve Rain, a First Nation country music artist from Enoch, Alta, and his friend Rob Taylor spoke to the four upper classes at Deh Gah school on Nov. 23. The singers led discussions about drugs and alcohol based on their own struggles.

NNSL Photo/graphic

Country music singer Steve Rain, left, and Rob Taylor share songs and discussions with students in Maureen Rutten's class. - photo courtesy of Christopher Carson

"It was really interesting," said Audrey Landry, one of the students.

They talked to us about drugs and what they do to you, Landry said. Their main message was that you should never go near drugs unless you want to lose everything.

Rain and Taylor also played the guitar and performed some songs for the students.

"He made a difference for all of us," Landry said about Rain.

The students really connected with the singers and their message, said Theresa Bonnetrouge, the principal of Deh Gah school.

"After it was over they were even asking them for autographs," Bonnetrouge said.

Rain and Taylor were brought to the community by the Friendship Centre, the Deh Gah Got'ie Justice Circle and the Youth Centre. On Oct. 23 they put on a concert at the community hall.

There was a good turn out, said Paschalina Thurber, executive director of the Friendship Centre.

Thurber said their message touched a number of people.

"I know it hit home," she said.

On a personal note, Thurber said the singer's message influenced the lives of her two teenage daughters. They came home from school and said they didn't want to follow the path towards alcohol and drugs, she said.

"It did make a difference in both their lives," Thurber said.