DALLAS — Mothers Against Drunk Driving's (MADD) THINK.Prom program, which is sponsored by Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company (Nationwide), is asking students to pledge to be alcohol and drug free during prom. THINK.Prom is part of a year-round, alcohol-use prevention program launched last fall by MADD and Nationwide to empower students to pledge to be alcohol and drug free all year.
The peer-to-peer, accountability program provides consistent, positive, and lifesaving messages to young people who receive many inconsistent messages about alcohol from friends, siblings, and even parents. For the first time this year, high school students can enter the THINK.Prom Video Scrapbook Contest. Students can submit a video up to two minutes in length.
"The THINK.Prom video contest is a creative way students can share lifesaving messages and encourage their peers to think about their choices," said Bill Windsor, Nationwide associate vice president of Safety. "Teens use technology as a way of communicating with one another and listening to one another. We view this as an opportunity to showcase their work while promoting a fun prom without alcohol. Everyone wins when students have a safe, sober and memorable prom."
Statistics show that traffic deaths among teens during typical prom season weekends (March 1-May 31) are higher than any other time of year. In 2005, 290 young people ages 15-20 were killed in alcohol-related crashes during prom season — of those, 198 deaths involved 15-20-year-old impaired drivers. Alcohol is the No. 1 drug problem among youth, killing more young people than all other illicit drugs combined. More than 6,000 young people die each year due to alcohol-related causes, including traffic crashes. In 2005, 2,035 15-20 year olds were killed in alcohol-related traffic crashes. Of those, 1,387 youth aged 15-20 died in crashes involving a 15-20-year-old alcohol-impaired driver.
The THINK.Prom Video Contest runs from February 22 through April 2. Students can upload their video entries at the video service website of their choice. The winner of the video scrapbook contest will be announced in early May and will receive a $500 cash award from Nationwide, and will be featured on a website and in the THINK.Prom 2008 school assembly DVD. The winning entrant's school will also receive a $1,000 cash award from Nationwide. For more information on the THINK.Prom program, video contest or materials, visit http://think.madd.org .