September is FASD Awareness Month!

Across the globe, September is being recognized as Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders Awareness Month. FASD Awareness Month is a permanent expansion of FASD Awareness Day, observed each year since 1999. This day was chosen so that on the ninth day of the ninth month of the year, people will remember that during the nine months of pregnancy, the safest option is to abstain from alcohol. People all around the world hold events to raise awareness about the dangers of drinking during pregnancy and advocate for needed supports to help individuals and families impacted by an FASD.

 Fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD) is a medical disorder that includes birth defects, brain injury, and disabilities. “People do not realize that as many as one in 20 children in the United States has an FASD and in North Carolina, 8,628 babies are born alcohol-exposed each year.” said Lauren Borchert, Program Manager for Proof Alliance NC, the NC Fetal Alcohol Prevention Program. More than 40 years of research has found that FASD is caused by drinking alcohol during pregnancy.  Because of this, all major health groups advise that abstaining from any alcoholic drinks including beer, wine or mixed drinks is the healthiest choice for pregnant individuals and those planning a pregnancy.

 Proof Alliance NC, a program of The Arc of North Carolina, strives to prevent alcohol-exposed pregnancies by providing training, education, and resources to professionals who serve individuals of reproductive age. Additional information on FASD, the importance of preventing alcohol exposed pregnancies, and alcohol-free drink recipes can be found at  Proof Alliance NC is also happy to provide a training about FASD to professional organizations and members of our community free of charge. We can offer these trainings virtually or in person. We have a variety of training offerings that can be scheduled by reaching out using this training request form.

 In support of FASD Awareness month, take action today by pledging to support alcohol-free pregnancies in your community.  Complete this short form and be entered into a drawing for a gift card!