July 23, 2008 —

This year — once a month from January to our first anniversary in May — we featured five women who have all made a great contribution to our cause, working locally to stop teen cough medicine abuse. I'm honored to recognize each of these outstanding parents one more time as our Five Moms All-Stars. As all five demonstrate, the best advocates for our cause are parents who are involved in their communities. These women have raised awareness of cough medicine abuse through their jobs, community groups, and personal networks, and who have used the resources at Five Moms to help educate parents about this issue.

In January, we honored Rose Mary Kendrick, a fellow D.A.R.E. officer from Kansas. Since hearing about Five Moms from her school's superintendent, she has been working to raise awareness about cough medicine abuse by informing teachers and friends. She incorporates lessons about the dangers of over-the-counter drug abuse into her classes.

Marilyn Belmonte, our February All-Star, is the co-chair of a local task force and works to educate parents and community leaders about cough medicine abuse. She actively shares information she receives from Five Moms with other parents, as well as incorporates information from Five Moms.com in a class she teaches on the risks and signs of teen drug abuse for adults.

March's All-Star, Amanda Smith, is a nurse in Anna, Illinois. She regularly interacts with parents at an out-patient clinic, and spends time educating them about cough medicine abuse. She also teaches parents how to safeguard their medicine cabinet to protect their children.

Gwendolyn Scales, honored in April, was a foster mom for over 10 years. She has provided a family for 17 children over that time, as well as her two biological children. After finding Five Moms.com while surfing the Internet, she spread our message about teen cough medicine abuse to her foster parent group.

In May, we honored our fifth Five Moms All-Star, Melissa Herzog. She is a mother of two children and is actively involved in her community. As the PTA president at her children's junior and senior high school, she actively researched issues affecting teenagers. At school meetings, she worked to educate parents about cough medicine abuse by sharing articles from Five Moms.com.

As a founding member of Five Moms, I have been thrilled to read all of the stories that you submitted. I would like to thank each one of you that has contributed to our goal of raising awareness of cough medicine abuse. These Five Moms All-Stars inspire me to continue my efforts of educating parents about cough medicine abuse. I hope that their stories have provided some inspiration for you, as well.

Although our contest is over, you can be an all-star in your community — it is easy and can make a huge difference. Learn more about the signs of cough medicine abuse and tell a friend about the resources at FiveMoms.com. Then, think about opportunities in your daily life to share information about this important cause with other parents and community members. Talking about what you have learned on FiveMoms.com and directing other parents to our resources is a great way to help parents safeguard their medicine cabinets and protect children your community.