HOLLYWOOD, Fla. — Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz (D-FL) and world record holder and Paralympic swimmer, Mallory Weggemann, joined The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility to bring Ask, Listen, Learn: Kids and Alcohol Don’t Mix to students at Apollo Middle School today. 

The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility created an interactive, physical fitness activity that builds on the existing Ask, Listen, Learn program and encourages kids to “say ‘YES’ to a healthy lifestyle and ‘NO’ to underage drinking.” The initiative is based on research by Harvard Medical School’s Dr. John Ratey, showing that for a person’s brain to function at its peak, the body needs to move. The interactive activity, as well as a supporting website, encourages kids to live a healthy lifestyle. The website also provides parents with information and strategies to help jumpstart the conversation about the dangers of underage drinking.

“It’s important that kids understand that the choices they make today—good and bad—will have a lasting impact on their lives,” said Congresswoman Debbie Wasserman Schultz.  “It was important to me as a mom and a member of Congress to see first-hand the creative work the Ask, Listen, Learn team is doing to engage children in the sometimes challenging discussion about the benefits of a healthy lifestyle and the hazards of underage drinking.”

Shannon Adams of The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility added, “According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, nearly 16 percent of 12- to 14- year olds report that they have consumed alcohol in the past month.  Our Ask, Listen, Learn program has the potential to further reduce these numbers, as half (49 percent) of young teens have said that  alcohol education has made a difference in the decisions they make regarding alcohol.” 

“We are thrilled The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility was able to bring their Ask, Listen, Learn program to Apollo Middle School.  Talking about the dangers of underage drinking with our youth is incredibly important and I have a feeling after today’s event our students will be asking to play the interactive activity a lot.  I believe the more enthusiasm we can build around this important issue – saying ‘no’ to underage drinking – the smarter choices our students will make,” said Principal Shawn Aycock.

Developed more than six years ago, Ask, Listen, Learn has already reached millions of parents, kids, and teachers around the country.  Ask, Listen, Learn’s new initiatives include:

  • Asklistenlearn.com encourages kids to “say ‘YES’ to a healthy lifestyle and ‘NO’ to underage drinking” by offering kids interactive and educational games and videos.
    • Any kid can become a member of the Ask, Listen, Learn Team by taking a pledge to make healthy choices. 
  • Ask, Listen, Learn utilizes role models such as Speed Skater Apolo Anton Ohno and professional track stars Tyson Gay and Bryan Clay, professional swimmers Rebecca Soni and Mallory Weggemann, and Taekwondo phenomenon Steven Lopez  as “SuperStars.” Ask, Listen, Learn Team members will be encouraged to read Questions and Answers from SuperStars to learn how elite athletes dealt with peer pressure as they were growing up.  SuperStars will encourage kids to make responsible decisions and live a healthy lifestyle. 
  • Ask, Listen, Learn reaches teachers across the country with a supplement in Scholastic where teachers may find information about the program and how to incorporate it into their lesson plans, kids can tear out posters, and can play educational games to learn about living a healthy lifestyle and saying no to underage drinking.  

About The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility

The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility, is a national not-for-profit leader in the fight to eliminate drunk driving and underage drinking and is funded by the following distillers: Bacardi U.S.A., Inc.; Beam, Inc.; Brown-Forman; Constellation Brands, Inc.; DIAGEO; Hood River Distillers, Inc.; and Pernod Ricard USA. Headquartered in Arlington, Virginia, The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility promotes responsible decision making regarding beverage alcohol and develops and implements innovative programs and public awareness campaigns which ignite action through strategic partnerships. Established in 1991, The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility’s initiatives are highlighted on its website at www.responsibility.org and www.asklistenlearn.org.

Darron Moffatt, The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility; MoffattD@responsibility.org or (202) 637-0077