ASHEVILLE, NC—Congressman Heath Shuler (D-NC) joined The Century Council to bring Ask, Listen, Learn: Kids and Alcohol Don’t Mix to students at Valley Springs Middle School today. In partnership with PE4Life, The Century Council 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 recent 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.
“The consequences of underage drinking is an important conversation to have with our youth, Ask, Listen Learn’s interactive fitness game is an engaging way to teach kids about the benefits of a healthy lifestyle and the health risks of underage drinking,” said Congressman Shuler.
Jennifer Curley of The Century Council added, “According to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, more than 17% of 12 to 14 year olds report they have consumed alcohol in the past month. Our Ask, Listen, Learn program has the potential to further reduce these numbers, as 80% of 12-14 year olds believe alcohol education has made a difference in the decision they have made regarding alcohol.”
Congressman Shuler has been honored multiple times by The Century Council for his ongoing commitment to fighting drunk driving and underage drinking. He has hosted numerous events directed towards high school students in previous years. “We are happy to have Congressman Shuler with us today to help spread this important message to the middle school students of Valley Springs,” Jennifer Curley of The Century Council.
“I have a feeling after today’s event our students will be asking to play the interactive activity. We are happy The Century Council has brought the program to our school as the more enthusiasm we can build around this important issue – saying ‘no’ to underage drinking – the smarter choices our students will make,” said Principal Burchfiel.
Developed over six years ago, Ask, Listen, Learn has already reached millions of parents, kids, and teachers around the country. In 2010, 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 will utilize role models such as Speed Skater Apolo Anton Ohno and professional swimmer Dara Torres 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. Through a public service in association with Sports Illustrated for Kids, positive messaging will appear in various print and online advertorials as well as interactive games over the course of 2010.
- Ask, Listen, Learn will have a supplement in Time For Kids 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.
The Century Council
Launched in 1991, The Century Council is a leader in the fight against drunk driving and underage drinking and promotes responsible decision making regarding beverage alcohol. The Century Council is funded by: Bacardi U.S.A., Inc., Beam Global Spirits & Wine, Inc., Brown-Forman, Constellation Brands, Inc., Diageo, Hood River Distillers, Inc., Pernod Ricard USA, and Sidney Frank Importing Co., Inc., For more information about Ask, Listen, Learn or The Century Council, or to order a copy of the program free-of-charge, please visit www.centurycouncil.org and www.asklistenlearn.com.
The PE4Life model emphasizes lifetime individual fitness education; an approach that meets the needs of all school children empowering them with the education, experiences and inspiration to lead a healthy lifestyle. PE4Life has trained nearly 1,500 educators representing more than 2,300 schools in 35 states, reaching more than 1.7 million kids.
Sport Illustrated for Kids
Sports Illustrated for Kids aims to create a fun, safe, environment for kids, filled with some of the best news, games, and interactive features on the internet. Emphasis is placed on kids leading a healthy lifestyle and also to provide a venue for kids to follow positive role models.
Jessica Lepak, The Century Council
(202) 637-0077, or LepakJ@CenturyCouncil.org