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Children and alcohol dont mix Alcohol Awareness Week 2010

What was it?
Children and alcohol don’t mix was the theme of our Alcohol Awareness Week (AAW) campaign in 2010.

We wanted to dispel myths that most young people are drinking (they aren’t), to show that underage drinking isn’t normal and to make people aware of the impact that different influences can have on children.

What we did
We hit the streets to get opinions from more than 1,000 adults across the region to discover what they thought about children, young people and alcohol – essentially what they thought was and wasn’t acceptable.

Key findings from the research showed that parents and other adults in the North East acknowledge the need to talk to their children about alcohol misuse and its consequences. Almost six in ten of those surveyed said that parents should talk to their children about alcohol by the age of 13.

We also found that an overwhelming majority of North Easterners have never bought alcohol for their children and more than eight in ten of the region’s parents said they had not purchased alcohol for their children aged 17-years and under.

We also used the research to highlight certain key trends that relate to alcohol and childhood so we could make policy recommendations which would in turn help tackle the issues. The key areas included:

Vital stats
Our research revealed that:

What people said
Colin Shevills, Director of Balance  

“The figures demonstrated that for an overwhelming majority of North Easterners, it’s just not considered normal for children and young people to drink alcohol or for their parents or other adults to enable them to drink alcohol.

“This campaign showed that the North East, on the whole, doesn’t subscribe to these mistaken beliefs. The vast majority of parents and adults in this region believe it's unacceptable for children and young people to drink. We know this strength of mind is having a real impact on reducing the number of children and young people who take up drinking at an early age.

“We hope this knowledge provided the minority of parents who are allowing their children to drink at an early age, or turning a blind eye, with a different perspective and the confidence to make the right decision when it comes to letting their children drink.”