NORWALK, Conn., April 1, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- April is Alcohol Awareness Month, and Diageo, the world's leading spirits, wine and beer company, and industry leader in promoting responsible drinking, marked the occasion by congratulating Apolo Ohno, the most decorated US Winter Olympian for presenting The Century Council's interactive 'Ask, Listen, Learn: Kids and Alcohol Don't Mix' program at the Cloonan Middle school in Stamford.
Guy Smith, Executive Vice President, Diageo North America, a founding member of The Century Council, said of the event, "Diageo employees are mothers, fathers, aunts, uncles, grandmothers and grandfathers too, and we never want kids to consume our products. We know that educating them about the dangers of underage drinking can help and that is why Diageo is proud to support Apolo Ohno in his work with The Century Council and the Ask, Listen, Learn: Kids and Alcohol Don't Mix initiative."
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 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 decisions I made as a young teen heavily influenced where I am today. In fact, many of the decisions I've made off-the-ice have contributed the most to my success," said Apolo Anton Ohno, winner of eight record-breaking Olympic medals in short-track speed skating. "I truly believe that healthy habits and positive choices start at childhood which is why I'm proud to work with The Century Council to spread healthy messages, including 'say no' to underage drinking, to kids across the country."
Brandy Nannini 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."
Apolo Ohno will also appear at Diageo's North American headquarters in Norwalk, Connecticut, later in the day to present 'Ask, Listen, Learn: Kids and Alcohol Don't Mix' once more to employees and their middle school aged children.
Diageo is the world's leading premium drinks business with an outstanding collection of beverage alcohol brands across spirits, beer and wine. These brands include Johnnie Walker, Crown Royal, J&B, Windsor, Buchanan's and Bushmills whiskies, Smirnoff, Ciroc and Ketel One vodkas, Baileys, Captain Morgan, Jose Cuervo, Tanqueray and Guinness.
Diageo is a global company, with its products sold in more than 180 countries around the world. The company is listed on both the New York Stock Exchange (DEO) and the London Stock Exchange (DGE). For more information about Diageo, its people, brands, and performance, visit us at Diageo.com. For our global resource that promotes responsible drinking through the sharing of best practice tools, information and initiatives, visit DRINKiQ.com.
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The Century Council
The Century Council, which has been at the front of the fight against drunk driving and underage drinking since its inception 20 years ago, is a national not-for-profit organization dedicated to fighting drunk driving and underage drinking and is funded by the following distillers: 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. Headquartered in Arlington, Virginia and chaired by The Hon. Susan Molinari, The Century Council is a leader in the fight to eliminate drunk driving and underage drinking and promotes responsible decision making regarding beverage alcohol. The Century Council develops and implements innovative programs and public awareness campaigns and promotes action through strategic partnerships. Established in 1991, The Century Council's initiatives are highlighted on its website at www.centurycouncil.org.
About 'Ask, Listen, Learn' Program
Developed over 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 Lolo Jones 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 will have 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.