FASD Awareness Day
On September 9, Albertans are encouraged to recognize and support Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Awareness Day.
What do you do if you or someone you love needs help?
Drop in to your local FASD Service Network. They offer diagnosis, assessment, support and unique programs that meet local needs. For example, the South Alberta network supports people with FASD through the justice system and pregnant women at-risk for substance abuse. The Mackenzie network offers a mentorship program for youth who may have FASD. Other networks are providing ground breaking programs for prevention and support.
“The 12 FASD Service Networks are welcoming places that aim to prevent FASD and support those with the disorder. The Government of Alberta is committed to continuing its leading work in FASD research, supports and prevention.”
- Naresh Bhardwaj, Associate Minister of Persons with Disabilities
What is FASD?
In Canada, prenatal exposure to alcohol is a leading cause of preventable brain damage and birth defects. It’s unknown exactly how much alcohol causes FASD – that is why it is safest not to drink any alcohol in pregnancy. Children and adults with FASD may have a range of symptoms, including difficulty controlling behaviour and understanding consequences.
A unique, made in Alberta prevention strategy is being piloted across the province. The Prevention Conversation: A Shared Responsibility aims to educate professionals and community workers who interact with pregnant women to discuss healthy pregnancies.
“Alcohol and pregnancy don’t mix. If you drink alcohol and are sexually active, make sure you use effective contraception.”
- Hazel Mitchell, FASD Prevention Conversation Project Lead
What is happening in Alberta for FASD Day?There are a number of events taking place across the province. The 12 Provincial Services Networks organize awareness events on an annual basis. Check out what is happening near you!