The "Not in My House" campaign that started in Stutsman County and aims to limit minors' access to alcohol to prevent underage drinking has gained momentum across the nation. It has been implemented in several different communities including nine in Wisconsin, according to Shannon Kaiser, community grant coordinator at Central Valley Health District.
Kaiser said the state of Wisconsin has discussed rolling it out as a statewide program.
Not in My House is focused on altering societal views and community norms surrounding alcohol and youth, Kaiser said.
CVHD and City-County Health District were invited to present on the campaign at a training session at the 18th annual Mid-Year Training Institute hosted by the Community Anti-Drug Coalitions of America on Monday, July 15, in Dallas, Texas. The training session focused on tactics to effectively collaborate with rural communities and communicate the dangers of underage drinking through the use of statistics.
The two districts explained the necessity of the Not in My House campaign in rural communities and how to break the social-norm of underage drinking by limiting a minor's access to alcohol.
"It's pretty cool to get national attention," Kaiser said. "It's struck a chord with a lot of people.
"A lot of alcohol for minors comes from within their own household," she said. "Small rural communities often use alcohol as a right of passage ... people think 'I did it as a kid and I turned out fine' and that is enabling their children."
In a study conducted by CVHD in Stutsman County in 2018, for a "select all that apply" question, 58 percent of high school students indicated they had obtained alcohol from home and 57 percent indicated they had obtained alcohol from a friend's home.
Though the campaign is focused on underage drinking, its target audience is the parents. Representatives of the campaign often give presentations at high schools, giving out pledges for the parents to sign.
"I refuse to buy, provide, or allow use of alcohol, tobacco, and other drugs by youth in my home," the pledge says.
Kaiser, with a modest graphic design background, created much of the campaign's content herself.
"I get calls from other states to use our content, and I let them," she said. "I want the campaign to continue to develop."
The campaign is funded by the Partnership for Success program, a federal grant administered by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. The grant expires next year, and Kaiser is now focused on sustaining the growth of the program.
Kaiser said high school students were surveyed when the program began in 2018, and again this year. Students were asked if they had talked to their parents in the last 12 months about the dangers of alcohol. The number of students who said yes increased by 10 percent.
In 2015, North Dakota led all states with 24.9 percent of adults binge drinking, according to the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System. Kaiser wants to stop the problem before it begins.
To learn more about Not in My House, visit www.prevention.nd.gov/notinmyhouse