My name is Nieves Álvarez and I am the Director of External Relations at DIA Group. Three months ago we presented the initiative “Stop under-age drinking, a challenge for all” on these same pages. This was a concern shared by a large part of society. We saw how our youngsters, often children, started drinking alcohol at a younger and younger age. It is a reality which we could not ignore.
Not long ago I read in a national newspaper that 42% of young people think that drinking is worth it despite the risk and the first thing that came to my mind was “it’s not a risk, guys, it’s actually damage, real and instant damage”. It is our responsibility as adults to let them know.
Our company has discussed this problem a great deal. As a company, our first concern is how can we do better in our stores. In contrast to the approach to move alcoholic beverages to the back of establishments so that they can not be easily seen, we actually moved them forward so that we sell them with greater control. Another step is facilitating training for our staff on the real impact of alcohol consumption as well as conflict management. However, while in the stores they are aware that most of those who buy alcohol are of legal age, they feel helpless seeing how those drinks are given to minors without problem on the spot. From our headquarters, we decided then to assume the responsibility as adults that I mentioned before, since we have to be able to achieve it.
For this reason, we have introduced the message in our stores and also in our commercial brochures, in our app, in our corporate website. We have created a specific website, we have included the message ‘Stop under-age drinking, a challenge for all’ in our press releases and also in our internal portal.
We have invited other players to share this responsibility. The FEB (Spanish Basketball Federation) and the players of the Women’s National Team have joined the initiative alongside some Liga DIA teams and their ambassadors, our Superliga Infantil too, and a media outlet, in this case, the TvCYL, we share a campaign and share a project with the FEBE #menoresniunagota (Spanish Federation of Spirits), the Campus and the publication Gigantes del Basket also contribute.
But we remain realistic, we are few, that is why we make an open invitation to all those who would like to join, companies, associations, schools, professional groups, NGOs, fathers, mothers, uncles, grandparents… EVERYBODY. With your own campaign, or with ours, but always with only one objective; to prevent under-age drinking.
Because it is not a risk, it is real damage that is happening today, right now.
*(El País. Data from the Reina Sofía Center)