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Surviving Alcohol Poisoning is a Team Sport -  Students Volley for Aware Awake Alive 3/23/14

Contact: Valerie Shaw valerie@shawtx.com 512 423 9319
Surviving Alcohol Poisoning is a Team Sport - Students Volley for Aware Awake Alive 3/23/14 At Noon At St. Andrew’s Upper School, 5901 Southwest Parkway, Austin, TX 78735

AUSTIN, Texas - Just shy of once every other day, an American student dies of alcohol poisoning/overdose because they, their peers, and those influential in their lives don’t know the risk or the signs. For those thinking "not my kid" as you read these words, The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) reports that 1 in 4 high school students are binge drinking—and hence at risk of deadly alcohol overdose. The Austin American Statesmen recently reported that Austin, TX has been ranked as the highest alcohol consumption city in the state of Texas.

On Sunday, March 23, 2014 at noon, sixteen 4 person volleyball teams will battle on grass volleyball courts to raise awareness and funds for Aware Awake Alive, an Austin-based and nationally focused organization that equips youth and their communities with the tools and confidence to prevent lives lost from alcohol poisoning. The 3rd "Annual 4-on-4 Volleyball Tournament" will be set up on the Nazro Green at St. Andrew's Upper School in Austin, TX with the goal of making students aware of the warning signs of alcohol poisoning. The beautiful spring weather, high energy, friendly banter, and crazy costumes add to the fun atmosphere on the courts—and levity to the subject at hand.

The tournament was created three years ago by St. Andrew's students John Covert, Max Jones, and Lucy Jones. As Student Ambassadors for Aware Awake Alive, the three were challenged to find ways to help spread the message of the organization to fellow high school students. This year marks year three of making the volleyball tournament a reality.

Typically, students get into trouble getting too drunk too quickly—often beyond the view of bars or older, more experienced drinkers. Students assume what many adults do: that someone that drunk will throw up or sleep it off. The incapacitated person is left alone and dies helplessly. The statistics are on par with accidental gun deaths, which the CDC calculates at 25% lower than alcohol poisoning deaths among college students.

With donations from supportive local businesses, the 2013 tournament raised over $5000 for Aware Awake Alive. This years 2014 sponsors include Taco Shack, Texas Fleet Fuel, Dirty Work Services, Cyc, Centex Tickets and Caesar Auto Detailing.

Austinites Julia and Scott Starkey's son Carson died of acute alcohol poisoning at age 18—unresponsive, unmonitored, and abandoned on a mattress. Following Carson's death and ensuing legal cases, the Starkey family formed Aware Awake Alive. Learn more and get free resources at www.awareawakealive.org.

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