Drinkaware is the embodiment of an organisation that goes above and beyond to instill positive change
Drinkaware is an independent charity working to reduce alcohol misuse and harm in the UK. Starting in 2004, the organisation now has over 9 million visitors to their website for information, advice and support annually. The Livetree Mark recognises the importance and reputation of Drinkaware as it aligns with our Charter Principles and numerous Sustainable Development Goals. In this piece, we will illustrate some of the fantastic work which this organisation does to help vulnerable people, and highlight why brands should become certified with Drinkaware.
Before we give you a better understanding of what Drinkaware gets up too, here is a quick explanation on what our Charter Principles are, and what we would expect from a Livetree Mark applicant. Livetree have a total of 7 Charter Principles, which set the benchmarks a brand must achieve before they can be assessed for the Livetree Mark.
We believe the standards set by Drinkaware personifies an ethical, sustainable and effective organisation, which brands within the drinks industry should look to strive towards. Specifically, in relation to our Principles, Drinkaware follows the ‘Environmental Performance Framework’, the ‘Initiatives Investment’ with the work it does outside of business, ‘Governance’ as it goes beyond the greater good of society, and most importantly ‘community’ with its core aim to help others.
The following sections demonstrate the ongoing work Drinkaware does to create a safer, more productive and healthy population.
As one of the most significant UN SDGs, ‘quality education’ is imperative to a more sustainable future for our world. Drinkaware actively contributes towards this goal, as they educate teenagers, adolescents and businesses on the misuse of alcohol.
Drinkaware takes pride that all of their information is medically verified by an independent panel of medical experts. Such information can educate the user on both the impact of drinking on themselves and the secondary impact of those around them. Topics include drinks and units, health effects of alcohol, drinking habits and behaviours, alcohol and the law and alcohol and relationships.
The organisation provides free, PHE approved curriculum-linked alcohol education resources for students aged 9 to 14. Additionally, there are also 1-hour workshop plans provide engaging activities for 11 to 16-year olds. Drinkaware’s objectives in education align with multiple Livetree principles and SDG’s.
Advice and support
Whilst face-to-face education can be informative and resonate with most people, there are some limiting factors to its success. For example, members of the audience who are suffering with a problem such as alcohol misuse may not feel confident enough to voice this in front of other people, limiting their opportunity to get the help they need. Therefore, if somebody would like to remain anonymous Drinkaware’s online advice and support channels are there to support them.
Accessible to anyone, Drinkaware’s website allows a user to immediately seek an in-depth step by step guide on how to help both themselves and others around them. This includes tips on how to stay on track and how to spot subtle signs of someone you love succumbing to alcohol misuse.
The website promotes a newsletter which allows the individual to submit tips on how they manage to cope with alcohol misuse, allowing those with similar obstacles to build a community and hurdle it together.
Drinkchat and Drinkline allows an individual to talk to trained professionals from the national alcohol support service if they would rather have a personal conversation about their problems.
Drink tracker is an app that tracks and calculates units, shows calories and allows the user to set attainable targets to reduce their drinking. Over 800,000 people used their online tool to find out about their weekly unit and calorie content last year (2019)
Working within businesses
‘Drink aware at work’ is designed to support the existing health, safety and wellbeing agenda of UK businesses, encouraging employees to think about alcohol alongside the other health information they receive.
The potential positive impacts of creating a healthier working environment and reducing alcohol misuse is enormous. Drinking culture within businesses, especially during the week has a number of negative impacts on performance, culture and productivity. Drinkaware aims to help business reverse these negative habits, in order to create a more inclusive environment.
Drinkaware also supplies retailers with assets, posters and campaign materials to help their customers on the ground.
The Livetree Mark
A Livetree Mark brand is one that strives to go beyond the basic benchmarks of sustainability and brings about real, positive change in the world. During these very challenging times with Covid, a global recession and ongoing SDGs it is even more crucial for brands to adopt brand values which people can relate to. Drinkaware is the benchmark of such values, as they continue to work online and on the ground to help those most in need. The Livetree Mark is not simply a certificate that a brand may buy to greenwash its image and continue following unethical practices. It tells the positive story of brands such as Drinkaware who have truly made the effort to change their policies to pursue a sustainable path to the future.
As a global collective, it is imperative to operate in a more sustainable way, if we are to have a successful and healthy future for generations to come. That is why, we encourage any brand that is able to contact and become certified with Drinkaware to do so, so you can attribute towards positive change. Once a brand supports and aligns itself with the principles of Drinkaware it will then become eligible to be awarded the Livetree Mark, which is only awarded to brands who match our own high levels of sustainability. Let us help you to spread Positive Stories.