If you have a story call our newsdesk on 01722 426511 or email us. To advertise call 01722 426500.
Project teaches young people about alcohol hazards
YOUNG people in Salisbury have teamed up to produce a series of animated videos on the impact of alcohol, which they hope will go viral across social networking sites.
The project called Alcohazard! is geared at raising awareness among young people and includes students from Wiltshire College as well as teenagers involved with Salisbury Arts Centre.
The group has prepared 23 videos - each 30 seconds long - with characters ranging from animated body parts such as brains and livers to discarded drink containers.
Project manager Richard White said: “Alcohol is the drug of choice for the culture we live in at the moment, and young people are subject to a whole lot of advertising.
“From the starting point talking about alcohol is in many ways quite uphill - drunks are fun and people talk about how crazily drunk they were.”
The videos, which will be posted across social networking sites, YouTube and on the Sparksite website, aim to trigger discussions and explore some of the issues related to the immediate short-term damage that alcohol causes as well as the long-term health risks.
Mr White said: “The exciting thing about it is the diversity of different animation styles.
“They involve some good attempts to use humour to get the message across and I think they will make it quite memorable.”
The project, funded by Wiltshire Council, involved two workshops at the arts centre, opportunities to work with animation artists at Wiltshire College, with an artist in residency at the college for six weeks.
It was commissioned after concerns were raised over the increasing levels of alcohol related antisocial behaviour and hospital admissions in the area.
Agencies behind the initiative, which was coordinated by Creative Wiltshire, include NHS Wiltshire and Salisbury Area Board.
Area Board chairman Richard Clewer said: “We wanted to get young people in their own voice to tell others about the alcohol message of drinking safely and sensibly.”