National Drug & Alcohol Facts Week (NDAFW) is an annual, week-long public health observance from the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA) to inspire critical dialogues surrounding the science, prevalence, and prevention of alcohol and drug misuse.
Pi Kappa Alpha is encouraging all members to use NDAFW as an opportunity to participate in both brother-to-brother and chapter-wide conversations about the role that alcohol and other substances play in their personal lives, on their campuses, and within their brotherhood. Throughout this week, the PIKE Health & Safety Team will be sharing facts, research, conversation starters, videos, self-assessments, and resources across the Fraternity’s social media accounts. While these important topics should always be at the forefront of every Pike’s mind, consider using these materials as a catalyst for more intentional action at the chapter level to promote the safety and wellbeing of all members, guests, and loved ones.
DID YOU KNOW?
- 1 in every 2 college-aged students report abusing drugs or partaking in dangerous drinking behaviors at least once a month.
- Roughly 25% of college-aged students indicate that their drinking habits have resulted in a direct negative impact on their academic performance.
- People who regularly interact with others who overconsume come to believe that heavy drinking and/or substance misuse is the “norm.”
TALK ABOUT IT: What is the drinking or drug “norm” in our chapter? What factors might contribute to this culture?
LEARN MORE: “A Guide for Responsible Drinking” is a quick 5-minute video produced by Pi Kappa Alpha’s insurance company, Favor & Company. The video covers the four key tips to drinking smart, recognizing the signs of alcohol overdose, practicing low-risk drinking, and how to seek help for substance misuse. Members can access the video HERE and review additional alcohol abuse prevention resources on Favor’s website.
DID YOU KNOW?
- Drug abuse & alcohol abuse are mental health disorders.
- In 2022, 46.3 million Americans met the criteria for a substance use disorder (SUD).
- People with one or more mental illnesses are statistically more likely to suffer from a SUD during their lifetime.
TALK ABOUT IT: What steps are we taking to support brothers struggling with their mental health? How are we identifying and addressing concerning behaviors?
LEARN MORE: The PIKELifeline offers a Self-Evaluator tool to help members determine whether they might benefit from seeking professional support for an alcohol or substance misuse disorder. Additionally, the JED Foundation provides a “Facts about Alcohol & Drugs” landing page to help educate PIKE men on the signs and common causes of substance misuse.
DID YOU KNOW?
Those who choose to consume alcohol can practice safer drinking strategies by:
- eating before and while drinking,
- setting a personal limit prior to starting
- tracking drinks
- practicing refusal skills
- alternating between alcohol and non-alcoholic beverages (aim for 8 oz. of water per standard drink*)
TALK ABOUT IT: How does our chapter actively promote safer drinking strategies? What else can we be doing to normalize moderate consumption and responsible use?
LEARN MORE: The Gordie Center offers a robust Alcohol Education Toolkit designed to encourage chapter conversations surrounding the role that alcohol can play both at social events and in one’s personal life. Available content includes videos and discussion guides on situational tolerance, safer drinking guidelines, the PUBS method, helping an intoxicated friend, and how to be an active bystander (UPSTANDER) when you see substance misuse.
DID YOU KNOW?
- 40% of college students reported misusing some form of prescription drug at least once, with the top two reasons being recreational & improving academic performance.
- A 2020 study found that a significantly higher percentage of students in Greek life reported knowing peers who regularly misuse prescription drugs.
TALK ABOUT IT: How do we currently address the risks associated with prescription drugs within our chapter? What measures are in place to connect brothers who may be struggling with professional support?
LEARN MORE: Pi Kappa Alpha has partnered with five inter/national organizations and Generation RX, a national drug misuse prevention program, to foster and enhance safe medication practices for our members. The module, found here, includes a video presentation, slide deck, and facilitator guide that outlines how to present materials as either a comprehensive workshop or as shorter, micro-learning opportunities across multiple chapter meetings.
Supporting a Brother
DID YOU KNOW?
- Recovering addicts with bigger social networks that included more abstainers & friends who support their new lifestyle achieved the best recovery outcomes three years post-treatment.
- Conversely, an individual struggling with an SUD or in recovery is more likely to misuse alcohol or other substances when those around them regularly consume.
TALK ABOUT IT: Is our chapter prepared to support a member struggling with or recovering from a substance use disorder?
LEARN MORE: You Can Help a Brother is a Fraternity Health and Safety Initiative presentation designed in partnership with the JED Foundation to teach members how to recognize and respond to signs of mental health distress in peers or within themselves. The presentation and accompanying speaker’s notes are available to all chapters and provisional chapters here for use without charge. Facilitators may include chapter consultants, Health & Safety Advisors, or Health & Safety Officers.