April is Alcohol Awareness Month! The nationally-recognized, month-long celebration of raising awareness about alcohol abuse and prevention is approaching quickly.
With the busyness that is often associated with the school year winding down, now it’s more important than ever to get a head start on upcoming projects. Begin planning your Youth Action Team’s and/or other youth-serving group’s Alcohol Awareness Month project today!
If you know you want to plan a project but aren’t sure where to begin, don’t worry! Below is a digest of GUIDE-approved project ideas to get you started. If one of these sounds like a good fit for your group, just click on the project title to be redirected to more information about the project.
- Alcohol Free Gets Me Campaign – This is a youth-focused underage drinking prevention campaign that encourages individuals to think of goals, hopes or dreams they have for their future and the ways in which being alcohol free will increase the likelihood that these aspirations can be reached.
- Request a Proclamation – Proclamations are a way to educate the public about a specific issue and bring attention to a cause. A proclamation is an effective tool for gaining public recognition of an event (like Alcohol Awareness Month) because it involves obtaining the full support of a key government official in your state or community.
- Conduct a Prevention Obstacle Course – The spring season is full of festivals, health fairs and outdoor school events – perfect for conducting a prevention obstacle course! A prevention obstacle course is your typical obstacle course (challenging tasks or hurdles to complete), modified to demonstrate different scenarios of risk related to alcohol and other drug use.
- Safe and Sober Prom – For individuals with prom events that coincide with Alcohol Awareness Month, utilize this project to use messages to encourage teens to be safe on prom night and participate in activities that do not involve drinking.
- Youth Positive Social Norms Campaign – A Positive Social Norms Campaign is one way to clarify or correct certain misperceptions of norms and promote positive social norms or behavior. Alcohol Awareness Month is an opportune time to dispel the myths around youth alcohol use. This campaign involves providing messaging to youth to share that their peers are NOT drinking alcohol as much as commonly believed.
- Adult Positive Social Norms Campaign – Similar to the above project, this project also aims to correct misperceptions about youth alcohol use through messaging that specifically targets adults.
- Warning Glass Cling Campaign – This project involves changing the physical design of businesses that sell alcohol by displaying warning glass clings on glass entrance doors and cooler doors that contain alcoholic beverages. The glass clings remind adults that it’s illegal to provide alcohol to minors in efforts to reduce retail access to alcohol among teens. Similar steps are also taken to conduct a Brown Bag Campaign.
- Social Hosting PSA – The goal of this project is to educate parents on the dangers and consequences that can occur when they allow the use of their home or properties by minors for hosting a party where alcohol is served. The project involves sharing a video PSA with the message that “social hosting” is not only dangerous, but is also illegal.
- Advocacy with Local Legislators – Anyone can be an advocate. If you have students who would be interested in using their voices, and helping others to use their voices, to influence change, this project is perfect. This can be especially timely during Alcohol Awareness Month to share issues related to prevention with elected officials.
- Conduct a Destructive Decisions Assembly – This is a great, low-cost exercise that allows youth to learn about the impacts of their choices through peer-to-peer interaction. The assembly entails having middle school students listen to the personal stories of high school students from their community related healthy choices and destructive behaviors. A similar (larger-scale, more formal) project could be Planning a Town Hall Meeting.
We would love to see your Alcohol Awareness Month projects in action! Tag us on social media at @guidegti and show off your successes.
One of the great things about these projects is that they can be completed year-round to celebrate a number of prevention-related occasions, like Red Ribbon Week or National Prevention Week, with only some slight adjustments to the messaging. Have a question about one of the projects? Feel free to contact Alexis Cato at firstname.lastname@example.org.