Brooke Hanson Ocsober Interview
Life Education is calling on Australians to stay sober this -Ocsober' and take a break from the booze for 28 days in October to break the cycle of alcohol abuse and help Aussie kids.
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.
This year's Ocsober campaign encourages Aussies to take a break from the booze to help break the cycle of alcohol abuse. Second time Ocsober ambassador and Senior Australian of the Year, Professor Gordian Fulde,Director of Emergency at St Vincent's Hospital Sydney, is no stranger to the effects of alcohol and the impact it can have on families and children.
'As an Emergency Doctor I'm constantly confronted by the adverse effect alcohol has on our community including the harms of binge drinking, alcohol fuelled violence and traffic accidents from drink driving. Sadly, excessive alcohol consumption is responsible for 5,554 deaths and 157,132 hospitalisations in Australia each year.
'There's nothing wrong with a couple of drinks every now and then, but we need to extend our preventative measures for the sake of our children, to help educate them about the dangers of alcohol misuse," Professor Fulde said.
Strategically timed to commence on 4th October following the AFL and NRL Grand Final weekend, the 28 day Ocsober challenge will also encourage participants to get fit and healthy to welcome summer.
Life Education Australia CEO, David Ballhausen, said that raising just $184 can provide a whole classroom of children access to Life Education's much needed upper primary alcohol program.
'This year, we're aiming to raise $700,000 to help Life Education continue to empower Aussie kids in pre, primary and secondary schools across Australia and expand further into regional and disadvantaged areas," Mr Ballhausen said.
'It is vital Aussie adults take a stand to create a cultural shift in Australia regarding our relationship with alcohol. Research tells us the cost of alcohol abuse in Australia is estimated at $36 billion a year.
'We cannot ignore the pervasiveness of alcohol misuse in relation to physical assaults. 1.7 million Australians were physically abused by someone under the influence of alcohol within a 12 month period. Across Australia. 73 percent of one-punch assaults resulting in fatality involve alcohol. Alcohol is implicated in up to half of all reported domestic violence in Australia.
'More than a million Aussie kids are impacted by the drinking of others and alcohol abuse is behind up to half of all child protection cases.
'Alcohol remains one of the biggest single causes of road deaths and injuries, responsible for 30 percent of fatalities.
'It's time to take a stand against the violence and road accidents caused by too much alcohol. We need to change our alcohol culture and it starts with us. Together we can create a safer future for our kids. That's why we're challenging Australians to take a break from the booze to help break the cycle of alcohol abuse."
In addition to Professor Gordian Fulde, the 2016 Ocsober campaign will partner with ambassadors including Olympic pole vaulting champion Tatiana Grigorieva and Vice Chief of the Defence Force Vice Admiral Ray Griggs who will stand alongside famed cricketer Matthew Hayden and wife Kellie.
Take a break from the booze to break the cycle of alcohol abuse and sign up for Ocsober in 2016 to help educate and empower more Aussie kids on how to make healthier and safer choices for their future. To register, visit www.ocsober.com.au.
Interview with Brooke Hanson
Question: What is Ocsober?
Brooke Hanson: Ocsober is a fundraising initiative of Life Education. It calls on all Australians to stay sober this -Ocsober' to help break the cycle of alcohol abuse and help Aussie kids. The fundraising initiative encourages Australians to give up alcohol for the month of October and raise money to help Life Education empower Aussie kids to make safe and healthy life choices. Every dollar raised during Ocsober will enable Life Education, with the support of their iconic giraffe mascot Healthy Harold, to continue to deliver health, drug and alcohol education programs in schools across Australia.
Question: Why did you decide to get involved in Ocsober?
Brooke Hanson: I want to bring a greater awareness to the incredible work Life Education is doing and help promote the need to break the cycle of alcohol abuse. In 2016, we are aiming to raise $700,000, so that Life Education can continue to teach 640,000 Aussie kids in over 3,300 schools annually.
Question: As an ambassador for Ocsober what do you hope to raise awareness for?
Brooke Hanson: Our Aussie kids deserve to live safe and healthy lives. They are our future and it's vital that we teach them to embrace a lifestyle that encourages healthy active values.
Question: Have you participated in Ocsober previously?
Brooke Hanson: This is my first time, I've been pregnant or breast feeding for the last 8 years so this year I can officially take part without already having an excuse of not drinking. I'm looking forward to it! It's surprising how your weekly drinks can add up when you have a glass of wine with dinner, happy hour drinks with friends on a Friday night or casual drinks on the weekend.
Question: Why should Australians join you in an alcohol-free month?
Brooke Hanson: I'm a mother of three children and I want them to experience the Life Education program and gain invaluable lifelong lessons. Raising money for Life Education through Ocsober can really make a difference for our future generations.
Question: How can Australians join or support your Ocsober campaign?
Brooke Hanson: It's so easy, go to www.ocsober.com.au and follow the sign up links!
Question: What benefits do you expect to see from a month-long alcohol detox?
Brooke Hanson: Your giving your body a chance freshen up, recover and most of all, you're giving your liver a break. By participating, you will experience many benefits including more energy, better sleep and overall pride which will lift your spirits as you know your helping such a great cause.
Question: What will you be drinking throughout October, rather than alcohol?
Brooke Hanson: I'm looking forward to trying homemade mocktails! A favourite of mine is soda water, fresh lime juice and fresh mint poured over ice. If I'm feeling left out at a social event I'll have a lemon lime and bitters or a ginger beer.
Question: What advice do you have for other Australians joining Ocsober?
Brooke Hanson: Firstly, well done on making a decision to go without the booze for a month. Be true to yourself and stay focused on your goal knowing your making a difference to Australian children. Most importantly though think about the reasons behind what your wanting to achieve! One year out from the Olympic Games I went without alcohol for 12months to reach my goal, so one month will be easy. The main tips I will follow to reach my goal when participating in Ocsober is reminding myself how much fun you can still have without alcohol.
Question: What tips would you like to give young adults about alcohol?
Brooke Hanson: njoy alcohol in moderation, stay in control and look out for your mates!
Interview by Brooke Hunter