FREDERICTON, NB--(Marketwired - December 07, 2016) - Your world can change in the blink of an eye. That's the message MADD Canada and Alcool NB Liquor (ANBL) are driving home to students with a new education program about the dangers and consequences of impaired driving.
MADD Canada's 2016-2017 School Assembly Program, titled In the Blink of an Eye, is touring the province now. A special screening of this year's presentation is being hosted at Leo Hayes High School today by MADD Canada and ANBL.
"Road crashes are the number one cause of death among young people in Canada, and more than 50% of those crashes involve alcohol and/or drugs," said MADD Canada National President Patricia Hynes-Coates. "It is so important that we talk to youth about these risks, and teach them how to make safe choices to protect themselves and one another."
In the Blink of an Eye tells the story of best friends Gabby and Sarah. One night, as the girls prepare to go to a party, they are joined by Sarah's boyfriend Dylan, and his friend Asif. Sarah drinks and smokes pot with Dylan and Asif, while Gabby declines. Dylan, anxious to get to the party, decides to drive rather than wait for a cab. His friends strongly object and refuse to get in the car. A very upset Sarah calls 911 to report Dylan, while Asif walks Gabby home. Even though Gabby, Asif and Sarah all do the right thing, a tragic twist of fate ends a friendship abruptly and ruins many lives. And it all happens in the blink of an eye.
As a long-time Provincial Sponsor of the School Assembly Program, ANBL supports the production and delivery of the programs. This year, ANBL is sponsoring 50 presentations of In the Blink of an Eye, and the French language program titled 24 Heures, for students around the province.
"ANBL is proud to join MADD Canada once again to open this important dialogue with young people, " said Brian Harriman, President and Chief Executive Officer of ANBL. "This powerful presentation will help students understand that impaired driving is not an accident, it's a choice, and they have the power to prevent it by making safe and responsible decisions."
In addition to the fictional storyline in In the Blink of an Eye, the presentation also features emotional real-life accounts of victims of impaired driving. In fact, it is the victim testimonials that have the most lasting impact on students. This year's program tells the stories of:
- Dean "DJ" Hancock
DJ Hancock was on his way home from a hockey tryout when his car was struck head-on by an impaired driver who crossed the centre line. DJ's parents arrived on the scene minutes later. He was breathing when his parents got there, but died as he was lifted from the mangled car.
- Jackie Dionne
Jackie and Kevin Clements were passengers in a car driven by a friend who was impaired by alcohol and drugs. The impaired driver lost control and crashed into a ditch. The driver and another passenger were treated for injuries and released. Jackie was killed instantly and Kevin died the next day. Jackie had a toddler son, Jayden.
- Mackenzie Fragoso
Mackenzie was riding in a car with her dad, David Fragoso, and step-mother, Charlotte Patterson, when they were hit head-on by an impaired driver who crossed the centre line. David and Charlotte were killed. Seriously injured, 12-year-old Mackenzie was pulled from the burning vehicle seconds before it exploded.
To see a clip from In the Blink of an Eye, please visit our School Assembly Program page in the Youth Services section on the MADD Canada web site at www.madd.ca.
Evidence shows that MADD Canada's strategies to reach young people are working. In a 2015-2016 survey of students who saw that year's School Assembly Program, titled 24 Heures: 80% of respondents said the program was effective in delivering its message about not driving while impaired; two-thirds of respondents said the presentation will be effective in changing behaviours regarding impaired driving; and 97% of respondents supported a similar presentation the following year.
Note to Assignment Editors: For information on when In the Blink of an Eye is visiting your area, please contact Deb Kelly, MADD Canada Communications Manager, at 1-800-665-6233, ext. 240 or email@example.com.