Wake Up Call exhibit, presentation educates Fort McCoy community

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Story by Scott Sturkol on 03/09/2017
The Fort McCoy Army Substance Abuse Program, or ASAP, hosted the Wake Up Call exhibit in building 905 at the installation from Feb. 21 through March 2.

The Wake Up Call exhibit, which debuted as a training event in April 2016, is a life-sized exhibit of a bedroom with more than 20 "red flags" that can signal drug or alcohol use, according to the website for Your Choice to Live Inc. Prevention Education of Hartland, Wis.

"The bedroom identifies spots where teens may hide drugs, household items that can be used as drug paraphernalia, and ways teens try to cover up drug and alcohol use," the Wake Up Call description shows on the website. "It is important for (people) to know what to look for in their own homes before alcohol and drug use escalates to other risky behaviors or addiction."

Terry Rogalla, Fort McCoy ASAP manager, said the exhibit came to Fort McCoy as part of his office's involvement with the Monroe County Safe Communities Coalition. A previous showing of the exhibit took place on a smaller scale in October 2016 in Sparta, Wis.

"In the Sparta venue, we could only fit at most 10 people in the room where it was presented, yet we still had many people from Fort McCoy participate," Rogalla said. "Then we thought about making this bigger and looked for a larger venue where it could be offered to more people. And that's how it came to Fort McCoy in this auditorium style presentation."
Rogalla said ASAP Prevention Specialist Michelle Bourman worked hard to inform the Fort McCoy community about the exhibit to ensure as much participation as possible, and it paid off with hundreds of people attending.

"Michelle did a fantastic job to get the information out there so people could attend," Rogalla said. "Also, those who attended were credited with an hour of substance abuse awareness training, which is required of all Soldiers and Army civilian employees every fiscal year."

Sandi Lybert, co-founder of Your Choice to Live Inc., gave the first two presentations about the exhibit Feb. 21. Rogalla; Natalie Carlisle, Monroe County Safe Community Coalition coordinator; and volunteer Ben Bourman gave 13 other presentations over 10 days.

"The main point of this exhibit is to raise the awareness, provide the knowledge, and give information and resources," Lybert said. "That is absolutely key.

"It also was wonderful to bring this to Fort McCoy," Lybert said. "What a privilege and honor. The impact of the hundreds of people attending is huge just at Fort McCoy alone."

Rogalla said that although the exhibit was originally set up on things to look for in a teen's bedroom, it isn't difficult to see where the same types of signs could be seen in other places, such as barracks rooms, cars, offices, or lockers. "These are not just indicators for teens, they can be red flags for anyone of any age who may be traveling down the dangerous path of substance abuse," he said.

Carlisle said she appreciated being a part of the Fort McCoy exhibit and noted the post is an important partner in the Monroe County Safe Community Coalition.

"Fort McCoy has been a part of our coalition for years now and now with Terry and Michelle it has grown even more," Carlisle said. "They regularly attend our meetings and participate in our work groups. After the exhibit took place in Sparta, which they assisted with, we said we absolutely needed to bring this to Fort McCoy."

For people who weren't able to attend the exhibit, Carlisle said more are planned for April.

"We encourage people who saw the presentation to share what they know with someone who could benefit from it," Carlisle said.

Additional chances to see the Wake Up Call exhibit and presentation will be in La Crosse, Wis., between April 3 and 27. Those interested can see the schedule at the Monroe County Safe Communities Coalition web site at

For more information about Your Choice to Live Prevention Education, go to or call 262-367-9901.

For more information about ASAP at Fort McCoy, call 608-388-2441.

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