Springfield teen’s advocacy efforts gain recognition at state, local levels

Dina Rulli-Heaphey, a sophomore at Springfield High, will receive a Youth Prevention Award this week for her advocacy efforts to encourage her peers to not indulge in harmful substances. Contributed photo
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Dina Rulli-Heaphey, a sophomore at Springfield High, will receive a Youth Prevention Award this week for her advocacy efforts to encourage her peers to not indulge in harmful substances. Contributed photo

Springfield High School sophomore honored by substance abuse prevention groups.

Anybody who thinks there aren’t enough hours in the day may want to think about Dina Rulli-Heaphey. The Springfield High School sophomore is part of so many groups and activities that you wonder how she manages the time.

This week, Rulli-Heaphey is being recognized throughout the state and in Springfield as a role model in various substance prevention advocacy groups during a pair of virtual events and a local campaign.

On Wednesday, May 5, Rulli-Heaphey will be one of five Ohio students awarded the Youth Prevention Award by the Alcohol and Drug Abuse Prevention Association of Ohio (ADAPAO) during its virtual Youth Prevention Showcase. On Friday, May 7, a virtual version of the Prevention Action Alliance’s “We Are the Majority Virtual Rally,” which she helped organize and secured the guest speaker for, will be presented including at a watch party at Springfield’s COhatch.

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Finally, one of her designs will be used on an anti-vaping campaign created by her and fellow BATS (Bringing Awareness to Students) members that will be appearing on ads on the Clark County Combined Health District’s social media pages and in print around Springfield by the Clark County Substance Abuse Prevention Coalition tying in with National Prevention Week beginning Sunday, May 9.

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Add in her seven-day-a-week rehearsals preparing for an upcoming show with Gary Geis Dance Company and you may feel exhausted just reading all the activity. Despite being hectic at times, Rulli-Heaphey finds energy in her endeavors.