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CHOICE - Think About It! 17 May 2006

The Department of Health and Social Security’s Health Promotion Department along with key partners will launch an awareness campaign on 15 May 2006 called ‘Choice’.

The ‘Choice’ campaign has been developed in response to increasing concerns about the risks to young people associated with binge drinking, drug use and second hand smoke. ‘Choice’ will run for 12 months and will be evaluated for impact and behaviour changes in the target audiences.

Choice’ aims to raise awareness about the consequences related to binge drinking linking to sexual risk and obesity, drug use and second hand smoke using messages developed by the target audience themselves (social marketing). The campaign has been devised and developed with the support of Isle of Man College.

Steve Rodan, MHK, Minister for Health and Social Security said,

“Targeting the correct messages at the correct audience is vital to ensure effective Health Promotion campaigns. Considering the recent growth of a binge drinking culture amongst young people and the negative impact on their health, targeting the first stage of the Choice campaign at this audience will ensure that this message is effective.”

The first phase of the campaign is targeted at young people aged 16 to 18 years and will focus on binge drinking. In order to get the messages to the target group some of the advertising materials will be placed on the back of toilet doors at venues where young people attend. Subsequent phases will address: alcohol consumption and obesity; alcohol, drug use and driving; binge drinking and sexual risk; alcohol and volatile substance abuse; risks of secondhand smoke.

Lesley Dorward, Director of Health Promotion said,

“By giving young people accurate information they are able to make better informed lifestyle choices. ‘Choice’ is a partnership project which aims to contribute to positive behavioural and lifestyle changes."

Dawn Henley, Senior Health Promotion Officer said,

“The images designed by the Art, Design and Media students are of an excellent standard. It has been great to be working with such enthusiastic students who participated in the focus groups and those who designed the images. “

Kathryn Scarlett, (Lecturer) Isle of Man College, Art, Design and Media Department added,

“This has been a wonderful opportunity for our students to produce Graphic Design work for a “live project”.

Students have worked in a number of different disciplines which have involved photo shoots, experimental computer graphics, and exploration of 2D media and techniques. They have particularly benefited from the experience of client liaisons and production meetings.

Subsequent phases will address: alcohol consumption and obesity; alcohol, drug use and driving; binge drinking and sexual risk; alcohol and volatile substance abuse; risks of secondhand smoke.

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