Alcohol Awareness Week is a seemingly simple and straightforward event for many people, but it can offer a huge boost to our communities and individual health and wellbeing overall. Alcohol Awareness Week has perhaps become an ever more important event in this day and age – and, with this in mind, we’ll be outlining some of the key things you should know about Alcohol Awareness Week 2022 – and how to get involved with activities.
After all, it’s a great opportunity to show your support for this massively important cause and potentially even find a new lifestyle that works for you. Plus, unlike so many other events – including Lent and the like – it’s only a week long, so it doesn’t have to represent a massive commitment or burden to get involved.
With close to 8,000 deaths last year related to alcohol, we can all play our part in spreading awareness to family and friends about what you can do to help cut this number down.
Origins of the Alcohol Awareness Week
Alcohol Awareness Week is an event that’s hosted annually to help support the conversation around alcohol consumption, encouraging responsible drinking and encouraging as many people as possible to drink for pleasure, not pressure.
The event is hosted by Alcohol Change UK, which is also known for its promotion of the Dry January programme. Alcohol Awareness Week was first launched in 2017 as a collaboration between Alcohol Change UK and Adfam, it aims to promote the need for enhanced openness and reduced peer pressure with alcohol consumption.
Alcohol Awareness Week typically runs in November. In line with this, for 2022, the event is expected to run between the 11th and the 16th of November and it is hoped that this year’s events will inspire ever more people to rethink their alcohol consumption and lead a healthier, happier life as a result.
The Benefits of an Alcohol-Free Week
The Alcohol Awareness Week only runs over the span of five days, although most people who participate continue to do so for a full seven-day week. There are numerous benefits to getting involved and trying an alcohol-free week for yourself. Some of the most notable benefits of a week away from alcohol that we have found include the following:
- You’ll enjoy better concentration. One of the earliest benefits that people see with an alcohol-free week is that they enjoy better concentration and focus. This can help you get on with your day more efficiently without feeling sluggish and unenthusiastic.
- You may sleep better. A week free from alcohol can lead to much better rested sleep. This simple change could be well worth considering if you’ve been looking for a way to optimise your sleeping routines and wake up refreshed rather than exhausted.
- You’ll save money! Did you know that the average UK resident consumes approximately 18 units of alcohol per week, according to Alcohol Change UK, which runs Alcohol Awareness Week. And, based on the price of a pretty generic bottle of wine from the supermarket, you could be looking at savings of around £10 a week – or over £500 per year, if you can stay off the alcohol at home on weekdays! And, if you tend to reach for a higher-quality bottle, those cost savings only rise!
- You’ll discover long-term alcohol-free strategies. The health benefits you see with a single week free from alcohol may be reduced, although it’s a great start. However, during your alcohol-free week, you’ll begin to discover strategies you could use going forwards to cut back on your alcohol consumption, which can make the entire transition much smoother. This could be finding a non-alcoholic drink that’s cheaper to make or a taste that’s similar with the same amount of pleasure. Plus, you’ll have huge amounts of support during this time from other people also attempting an alcohol-free week, so it’s worth considering.
For many participants, the Alcohol Awareness Week offers a starting point towards lower alcohol consumption going forwards; and if you find yourself falling off the bandwagon during December, don’t worry; Dry January is just around the corner to give you another kickstart.
How to Get Involved With Alcohol Awareness Week 2022
If you’d like to get involved with Alcohol Awareness Week, there’s a lot of potential for different options and activities. However, the most important thing is simply to ensure you’re there for other people who might be going through a difficult time – or, if you’d like to get involved yourself, please don’t be afraid to reach out for support at https://alcoholchange.org.uk. There are so many caring and compassionate people who would like to help make your transition easier to an alcohol-free life, and this week could be the ideal time to find them.
In addition, as part of Alcohol Awareness Week, you could also get involved in many other ways. These include:
- Supporting friends, family members and loved ones with their own alcohol dependence and encouraging them to reduce their alcohol consumption. Offering suggestions for ways to go about this can be an excellent first step to take.
- Promoting the event to ensure greater outreach and knowledge of the week. Platforms such as social media are excellent ways to get the word out; you may even inspire someone you’ve not spoken to in years to get the help they need with just a single post.
- Fundraising for charities that support people with alcohol addictions and dependence can help you make a genuine difference in your community as a result. This can be as simple as a sponsored run, a bake sale or even a month off of alcohol yourself; every little donation helps!
- Encouraging other people to learn more about Alcohol Awareness Week and its messages. Unfortunately, all too many people struggle with peer pressure when it comes to alcohol consumption, often drinking because it’s ‘expected’ of them. However, alcohol should always be a choice and never expected. The Alcohol Awareness Week aims to change this and educate people to make the best decisions for their body.
These are just a few ways you can get involved with Alcohol Awareness Week, outside of just events alone. Luckily, there will likely also be countless great events during the week, so be sure to watch out for these so you don’t miss out. These often include live presentations, drop-in clinics, local pub meet-ups, group fundraisers, and more – there’s always something for everyone!
What to Expect for Events in London
At present, a schedule of events unfortunately hasn’t been released for Alcohol Awareness Week 2022. However, there will hopefully be countless different opportunities for participants to get involved based on past years. Some of the sessions that we can expect to see for Alcohol Awareness Week 2022 may include the following:
- Online mindfulness sessions and guided creativity workshops to help individuals find an alternative source of stress-relief than turning to alcohol.
- Q&A sessions, with the opportunity for individuals or their loved ones to ask questions and receive personalised advice based on their situation.
- Documentary screenings allow individuals to learn more about alcohol dependency in a judgement-free environment when they might otherwise be uncomfortable to do so
- Real-life recovery stories, shared by people who previously suffered from alcohol dependency. These stories can often offer an inspirational insight for those who have just begun their journey to cutting down on alcohol, showing that it’s genuinely possible.
- Live debates with the chance for participants to share their experiences and have their own say on the importance of increased awareness.
- Yoga sessions to help individuals begin increasing their physical fitness, hosted by professional yoga coaches.
- Talks and discussions regarding the effects of alcohol consumption on our health and wellbeing, often in large groups with Q&A sessions after.
- Awareness stalls hosted by professional GPs and Charities, offering a simple opportunity for people to find support for their or a loved one’s alcohol consumption.
Alcohol Awareness Week is hugely important, supporting with awareness and campaigns to ensure that as many people as possible can enjoy the fun of alcohol without ever having to feel pressured into consuming it. After all, drinking should always be a choice – and with a little encouragement, Alcohol Awareness Week aims to inspire as many people as possible to find the drinking opportunities that work best for them.