Life Skills Education Charity programmes are designed to help young people make safe and healthy decisions and improve their knowledge around alcohol awareness.
We know that alcohol is legal in the UK, it can be bought cheaply, is widely available and socially acceptable. The government, public services and charities agree that alcohol abuse causes massive harm to individuals, families, communities and society and the financial costs of dealing with these issues are huge. The use of alcohol is firmly engrained in our society by many and is often used as a means of either celebration or commiseration. Alcohol is used responsibly by many and regularly in social situations in order to relax and have fun; there are others who chose not to use alcohol for a variety of reasons including those of culture or religion.
Young people will look to emulate adults and experimentation with alcohol can often be seen as a ‘rite of passage’ by many and a part of the journey through adolescence. Young people can be subject to peer pressure and can often use alcohol in conjunction with tobacco and/or other drugs. They commonly do not have the strategies to manage the effects of this, due to their age and stage in life and the developmental stage of their brain. This can result in them being more exposed to risky behaviour (including criminal and sexual behaviour) that they are ill equipped to deal with and which can have far reaching consequences. As a result, young people’s lives can be adversely affected emotionally, socially, educationally, and physically which can impact them profoundly into later years.
Our programmes talk about not being pressurised into drinking by your peers. If others do not respect your wishes, find a way to leave the situation or find help.
It is important that any alcohol awareness course addresses a range of issues including prevention, education and support. Here at Lifeskills Education our alcohol education module forms part of our overall substance abuse/prevention programme and address issues related to alcohol head on. Young people are given facts and information about alcohol which will enable them to make positive choices about their own use of alcohol and increase their knowledge and awareness of alcohol related issues. We do not use the ‘just say No’ message, or use ‘scare tactics’ – evidence proves that this type of approach is likely to have the opposite effect on young people. Our alcohol awareness resources are designed to help students to look at the facts and health effects of alcohol during lessons. This gives students the opportunity to explore the risks and consequences of their behaviour, together with teaching them how to make safe and healthy choices using our unique DARE DECISION MAKING MODEL. We encourage young people to respect themselves and respect others choices in relation to alcohol and to understand that it is OK to chose not to partake when it can appear that others all around them are doing so.
Other good sources of information on alcohol awareness include:
Drinkaware is an independent charity working to reduce alcohol misuse and harm in the UK. We’re here to help people make better choices about drinking.
For help and advice when something goes wrong, the Live Well website from the NHS is great tool for finding out where to get help.
Alcohol Change UK is a leading UK alcohol charity, formed from the merger of Alcohol Concern and Alcohol Research UK.
DARE to be safe and healthy.