Grand Prairie, TX — Today, Champion figure skater Ashley Wagner and Congressman Marc Veasey (D-33) partnered with The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility’s Ask, Listen, Learn: Kids and Alcohol Don’t Mix program to encourage students at John Adams Middle School to “say ‘YES’ to a healthy lifestyle and ‘NO’ to underage drinking.”
Wagner and Congressman Veasey cheered on students as they excitedly competed for high scores in the running competition on Ask, Listen, Learn’s interactive game. The game enables middle school kids to learn about the negative consequences of underage drinking and the benefits of making healthy decisions while they exercise. The premise 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 multimedia program includes a game and print materials, and the website presents a pledge to live a healthy lifestyle, online games and pages featuring Ask, Listen, Learn Superstars. Ask, Listen, Learn’s message is also distributed to 30,000 middle schools nationwide through Scholastic resources.
“As an older sister, I know my brother looks up to me and watches every move I make,” noted Wagner. “I made healthy decisions in middle school that kept me on track to become the figure skater I am today. That’s why I’m happy to partner with Ask, Listen, Learn as a role model for kids around the country.”
“These middle school students are the future of Texas,” said Congressman Veasey. “I’m proud to be part of this educational program to jumpstart the conversation on underage drinking so that young people learn to make the right choices for a successful adulthood.”
John Adams principal, Ms. Nneka Bernard, applauded The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility’s efforts to reach her students on this key issue. “Underage drinking can be a tricky subject for middle schoolers to talk about. The way in which the Ask, Listen, Learn program encourages collaborative conversations in the classroom and at home with family is invaluable to our students.”
“While we’re proud the availability of alcohol to underage youth has declined for more than a decade, 11 percent of 8th graders report they have consumed alcohol in the past month,” said Ralph Blackman, President and CEO of The Foundation for Advancing Alcohol Responsibility. “It’s important for parents to recognize that they are the leading influence in kids’ decision not to drink- and kids are listening.”
About Ask, Listen, Learn
Ask, Listen, Learn is the most widely distributed alcohol education program of its kind. Ask, Listen, Learn’s initiatives include Asklistenlearn.com, a website that encourages kids to “say ‘YES’ to a healthy lifestyle and ‘NO’ to underage drinking” by offering kids interactive and educational games and videos. On the site kids can read about positive role models and take a pledge to make healthy choices. Parents and educators are also encouraged to visit the site for tips on how to facilitate these conversations and read interviews with gymnast Aly Raisman’s parents on how they talked to their kids about underage drinking. Ask, Listen, Learn is also on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest constantly promoting a healthy lifestyle message.
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.