Red Ribbon Week/Drug Information

Red Ribbon Week is the nation’s oldest and largest drug prevention program reaching millions of Americans during the last week of October every year. By wearing red ribbons and participating in community anti-drug events, young people pledge to live a drug-free life and pay tribute to DEA Special Agent Enriqué “Kiki” Camarena.

Special Agent Kiki Camarena:

Special Agent Camarena was an 11-year veteran of the DEA assigned to the Guadalajara, Mexico, office where he was on the trail of the country’s biggest marijuana and cocaine traffickers. In 1985, he was extremely close to unlocking a multi-billion dollar drug pipeline. On February 7, 1985, he was kidnapped, brutally tortured, and murdered by Mexican drug traffickers. His tragic death opened the eyes of many Americans to the dangers of drugs and the international scope of the drug trade.

History of Red Ribbon Week:

Shortly after Kiki’s death, Congressman Duncan Hunter and Kiki’s high school friend Henry Lozano launched “Camarena Clubs” in Kiki’s hometown of Calexico, California. Hundreds of club members pledged to lead drug-free lives to honor the sacrifice made by Kiki Camarena. These pledges were delivered to First Lady Nancy Reagan at a national conference of parents combating youth drug use. Several state parent organizations then called on community groups to wear red ribbons during the last week of October as a symbol of their drug-free commitment. In 1988, the National Family Partnership (NFP) coordinated the first National Red Ribbon Week with President and Mrs. Reagan serving as honorary chairpersons.

Red Ribbon Week Events at Kell:

At Kell, PTSA participates in National Red Ribbon Week with our Red-e Campaign. This campaign focuses on encouraging our students to get ready for their future by being ready for class, ready to take a test, ready to graduate, and ready to make wise choices in life. The logo for this campaign is a large RED lower case “e” letter. The hope is that students will see the red “e” and think “ready”.

During National Red Ribbon Week, students are asked to sign a pledge to “Be Ready” and given an “e” button. Students wearing the “e” buttons throughout Red Ribbon Week can receive free treats or prizes from PTSA during lunch times. Students that participate can also earn “Seen Red-e” raffle tickets from teachers. These raffle tickets can be entered to win gift cards, Kell stadium blankets, or other prizes.

For more information about Red Ribbon Week at Kell or to get involved, please contact our Red Ribbon Week chair at