September 18, 2019
South Burnett Regional Council has launched a campaign to raise awareness about Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) in the local community.
Children born with FASD may have difficulties with physical activities, speech, memory and behaviour due to brain injuries caused by their mothers drinking alcohol while pregnant.
Council recently applied to the Alcohol and Drug Foundation (ADF) for funding for a “Healthy Pregnancies and Bright Futures” project which will be delivered with local partners in the region.
ADF will fund $28,830, which will be added to Council’s in-kind contribution of $32,380 and an in-kind contribution of $2000 from Darin ‘meme na bari bari’ (the Women’s and Children’s Service) in Cherbourg.
“During the course of this project, we will be working with key partners of the South Burnett community to increase knowledge of the harms associated with alcohol consumption during pregnancy,” Cr Danita Potter said.
“This will be undertaken through community awareness events and activities, information sessions and providing resources for community members at key community hubs across our region.”
“Healthy Pregnancies and Bright Futures” will also involve South Burnett CTC, Lives Lived Well, Queensland Police, Education Queensland, Queensland Health and Darin ‘meme na bari bari’.
It will build on and support existing South Burnett and Cherbourg FASD initiatives and target key local service providers who engage with men and women of reproductive age (including pregnant women and their partners, family and friends) to raise awareness about the issue.
“The benefits of this program may well be a reduced number of children who require additional support/assistance from the long-term health risks associated with FASD,” Cr Potter said.
“To be able to make a change now in our community, we need to ensure the information and support gets out there.”
The time in the womb is a critical. It determines the health outcomes of the baby at birth and also influences life development, health and emotional well-being.
Having an alcohol-free pregnancy helps to protect both the pregnant mother and her developing baby from immediate and long-term health risks and alcohol-related harms.