Distilleries fund alcohol education at UK, UofL

Gifts from two major Kentucky distilleries will fund and strengthen alcohol education and awareness programs at the University of Louisville and the University of Kentucky. The gifts will also help expand alcohol programming across the commonwealth.

At a news conference today, the universities announced they had received a three-year gift from Beam Inc. and Brown-Forman Corp. totaling more than $600,000 to fund ongoing efforts at the schools. In all, the two companies have given more than $1 million to the two institutions since 2008 to fund alcohol education efforts.

“We are grateful to Beam Inc. and Brown-Forman Corp. for these generous gifts. This money will allow us to further develop risk-averting educational programming not only for our students, but for our community as well,” UofL President James Ramsey said.

“This statewide collaboration brings together four well-known Kentucky brands to help our student-scholars develop safe and responsible behaviors early so they graduate as engaged and accountable citizens,” UK President Eli Capilouto said.

UK and UofL use evidence-based strategies endorsed by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism. The gifts from Beam and Brown-Forman, which will be distributed over three years to each university, are to be used at the schools’ discretion.

“This investment will establish best practices to reduce underage and high-risk drinking throughout our home state” said Jim O’Malley, Brown-Forman senior vice president of global corporate affairs. “We envision even greater positive impact if other states and universities beyond Kentucky adopt similar approaches.”

Matt Stanton, Beam’s vice president of public affairs and corporate social responsibility said, “Beam is proud to partner with the University of Louisville and the University of Kentucky in supporting evidence-based solutions to address underage drinking on campus. It is critical that we all work together to make our colleges safe for young people.”

The UK investment, administered by the UK Division of Student Affairs Office of Substance Education and Responsibility, is intended to:
•Increase the number of local high schools and after-school programs involved with the “Leaders of Character” youth educational program.
•Continue campus education programming to encourage and define safety and responsibility with regard to alcohol abuse.
•Increase off-campus partnerships/programming with local housing complexes.
The UofL investment, to be administered by the Building Resiliency in Campus Community Coalition (BRICC), is intended to:
•Provide ongoing support for activities through the BRICC.
•Support pilot educational programming on campus and in the community.
•Expand data collection efforts and engage partners to develop better infrastructure for tracking data and sharing.
•Continue work with the Pacific Institute for Research and Evaluation to develop a resource guide and evaluation tools to pilot the Voice of Reason initiative.

Both schools are also committed to developing more institutional resources through a sustainable statewide partnership with Kentucky Prevention Network. KPN provides opportunities for institutions to collaborate with community organizations and prevention specialists within their region to reduce high-risk drinking. UK and UofL will contribute $35,000 to fund additional resources for the partnership.


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