Wednesday, December 30, 2009

New Online Program Gives Parents and Schools an Innovative Tool to Prevent Substance Use Among Youth

/PRNewswire/ -- National Institute For Alcohol Recovery (NIFAR®) is unveiling a new online program, Youth Awareness, a practical tool to help concerned parents and educators prevent teen alcohol and drug use. This endeavor is one of several new programs launched by NIFAR, a progressive organization dedicated to alcohol prevention and recovery programs for home use.

Currently, alcohol use is widespread among youth. Surprisingly, 62% of high school seniors report they have been drunk -- and 31% say they have had five or more drinks in a row in the last two weeks[1]. Concurrently, each day young people are injured or fatally killed in alcohol-related incidents. Further, a survey of female college students found a significant relationship between the amount of reported weekly drinking and experiences of sexual victimization[2].

Youth Awareness explains what alcohol and drugs are and how they can impact a young person's future. The program is designed to be fun as well as informative. "Today's teens don't want to be lectured. They just want the info so they can make up their own minds", said Kamran Loghman, Executive Director of NIFAR. Further, the program is available at Nifar.com via high-speed streaming audio and downloads for an iPod® or mp3 player -- a modern format kids know and love.

Youth Awareness has received the support of leading experts in addiction medicine, including Dr. Devang Gandhi, a board-certified physician in addiction medicine, and Dr. Thomas Goldbaum, a board-certified cardiologist and Associate Professor of Medicine at Georgetown University.

This program is being launched at a critical time. Alcohol addiction is now the number one health problem in the U.S. and in more than forty countries worldwide[2,3]. Sadly, underage drinking lays the foundation for alcoholism and related health problems later in life, such as heart disease, cancer, and brain damage. Even advanced brain imaging has shown that kids who drink develop a smaller brain than those who do not[4].

NIFAR seeks to reduce the social and economic impact of problem drinking with Youth Awareness and other breakthrough programs in alcohol recovery and family support. To learn more, please visit www.nifar.com. Or contact Kamran Loghman, Executive Director, at nifar@nifar.org.

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