Stay sober this ‘Ocsober’ to help Aussie kids

Springwood resident Holly Borbely is taking part in Ocsober.

Springwood resident Holly Borbely is taking part in Ocsober.

Blue Mountains Roller Derby League will favour a bout over the booze for 28 days this October to raise awareness of alcohol related harm in young people.

Joining them in staying sober this October are Blue Mountains locals Holly Borbely, Amy Bell, Kat Boehringer and Morgan Boehringer, who are raising money so that Healthy Harold and Life Education NSW’s vital health and drug programs can reach more local kids.

Springwood resident Holly Borbely, who is Life Education NSW’s Schools Development Manager, said statistics show that alcohol-related deaths are the largest threat to Australians between the ages of 16 to 24. 

“Culturally we are starting to understand that we have a drinking problem. It’s a critical concern that almost 1 in 8 deaths of people ages under 25 is due to alcohol,” Ms Borbely said.

“Alarmingly, more than 20 per cent of 14-19 year olds consume alcohol on a weekly basis, and approximately 40 per cent of 14-19 year olds drink at levels that risk harm in the short-term like accident and injury.

“We need to act now. Preventative programs like Life Education are part of the solution.”

Life Education and its Healthy Harold program, delivered in partnership with local schools, tackles the topic of drinking alcohol in an age appropriate context in its upper primary modules, including its new program called ‘Decisions’.

Upper Mountains residents Morgan Boehringer and Amy Bell enjoy a glass of mineral water in preparation for Ocsober.

Upper Mountains residents Morgan Boehringer and Amy Bell enjoy a glass of mineral water in preparation for Ocsober.

 “The new module will facilitate a discussion around drugs such as medicines, including analgesics, caffeine, tobacco and alcohol, as well as cannabis and amphetamines. It will explore the decision making process and improve decision making skills by looking at choices, consequences, responsibility, facts, information, and influences,” Ms Borbely said.

“In NSW, more than a quarter of a million kids see our programs. We would love to see that number increase.”

“We are thrilled to be getting behind this important cause, to help raise awareness of an issue that affects so many of our young people,” Blue Mountains Roller Derby League president, Andrew Hainsworth said.

Blue Mountains Roller Derby League players.

Blue Mountains Roller Derby League players.

Life Education NSW is encouraging Blue Mountains residents to take a break from the booze to help break the cycle of alcohol abuse and raise awareness of alcohol related harm in young people.

This year Life Education aims to raise $700,000 during Ocsober to teach 640,000 Aussie kids in over 3,400 schools each year about the importance of healthy living and the effects of alcohol and drug misuse, with the support of iconic educational mascot ‘Healthy Harold’ the giraffe.

To join in the Ocsober challenger, or to sponsor a participant, visit www.ocsober.com.au

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