4-H, NC ABC Commission Partner to Reduce Underage Drinking

North Carolina’s largest youth organization boosts state’s prevention and education efforts

RALEIGH, N.C.—The NC ABC Commission is proud to announce a new statewide partnership with North Carolina 4-H Youth Development.

North Carolina 4-H, which is coordinated by NC State University’s Extension Service, signed on this winter as an official statewide partner of the NC ABC Commission’s Talk It Out campaign. Through this partnership, the NC ABC Commission is working with North Carolina 4-H to educate North Carolina youth and their parents about the dangers of alcohol and underage drinking through various programs, including the 4-H Health Rocks! program.

Health Rocks! is an evidence-based, healthy living curricula aimed at bringing youth, families and communities across the United States together to reduce youth tobacco, alcohol and drug use. Health Rocks! helps youth develop life skills in critical thinking, decision making, communication, managing feelings, stress management and goal setting to help them resist risky behaviors.

“The 4-H mission is to empower youth to reach their full potential, working and learning in partnership with caring adults,” said Salim Oden, Health Rocks! coordinator, Department of 4-H Youth Development at NC State. “North Carolina 4-H is excited to partner with Talk It Out to build sustainable programs to reach North Carolina youth and their families with information about the real dangers of underage drinking. It’s through partnerships like these that we can really make an impact, starting at the grassroots level.”

For the past three years, North Carolina 4-H has worked with partners to expand the reach of its healthy living curricula. During the 2014-2015 school year, Health Rocks! was delivered to more than 5,300 youth in 24 North Carolina counties through partnerships with schools, after-school programs and youth leaders. The NC ABC Commission is currently working with N.C. 4-H to expand the program in North Carolina.

“We fully support the mission of North Carolina 4-H to teach today’s youth about being responsible and making good decisions in all aspects of life, especially when it comes to alcohol, tobacco and other drugs,” said Jim Gardner, chairman of the NC ABC Commission. “We look forward to helping 4-H reach more children across our state, and working together to help parents and children to have honest discussions to reduce underage drinking and other drug use.”

For more information about 4-H Health Rocks!, visit the program website, or visit www.nc4h.org to learn more about how 4-H is making a positive impact in North Carolina. For more information on the Talk It Out campaign, visit www.talkitoutnc.org.

4-H is North Carolina’s largest positive youth development program, empowering hundreds of thousands of young people across North Carolina. 4-H grows confident, capable and caring kids with the life skills to thrive in today’s world and succeed in their boldest dreams for tomorrow. North Carolina Cooperative Extension at NC State University and N.C. A&T State University conducts the 4-H program. 4-H is the largest youth organization in North Carolina with more than 232,000 participants and 20,500 youth and adult volunteers. 4-H is best identified by its green four-leaf clover with an H on each leaf, symbolizing Head, Heart, Hands and Health. 4-H is the only youth organization based at land-grant universities and provides the first experience many youth have with higher education. To learn more or to find out how to get involved with 4-H, visit www.nc4h.org.