Coalition organizes FASD Day BBQ
Nancy Neufeld, FASD coordinator with Southern Regional Health Authority, said the Portage FASD Coalition received $500 in funding from the Manitoba Coalition on Alcohol and Pregnancy (MCAP) to host a free barbecue and print information to distribute on Sept. 9. (FILE PHOTO)
The Portage and District FASD Coalition will be hosting a free barbecue next month in support of Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Day.
Barry Rud, FASD Coalition chair, said the free event will be taking place on Sept. 8 in the Walmart parking lot from 11:30 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
“Portage and District FASD Coalition has arranged a barbecue that is going to be occurring on Sunday Sept. 9. We’ve also been involved with a project to put informational posters into some of the local drinking establishments with some information about Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD),” said Rud.
The Coalition will also be accepting donations during the barbecue.
“We will be open to some donations. The FASD Coalition has elected to make any proceeds from that barbecue will be donated to the new Tupper St. Family Resource Centre,” said Rud.
During that time the coalition will also be plugging a workshop, taking place on Oct. 19 on FASD and crime.
“The workshop we have scheduled will be really focused on FASD and crime and its implications and how systems can intervene more humanely or effectively with those impacted by this disorder,” said Rud.
The coalition has about ten members who are very active from all different parts of the community – private citizens, parents, members of the Portage la Prairie School Division, Child and Family Services, the Portage Friendship Centre among others. Their common goal is to engage community partnerships through education and professional development, to recognize and prevent FASD in Portage and area and working to support those impacted.
“If everyone who was of childbearing age was aware of it and recognizing that if they could become pregnant that drinking alcohol, there is no safe amount. It’s not about shaming it’s about making people aware of the potential and of the role of partners in supporting women who are expecting,” said Rud. “Although zero is the only safe amount, we do know that less is certainly better.”
Nancy Neufeld, FASD coordinator with the Southern Regional Health Authority, said the coalition received $500 in funds for the new event from a grant from the Manitoba Coalition on Alcohol and Pregnancy (MCAP).
“The Portage and area FASD Coalition had just completed a grant application MCAP had sent out to the different coalitions that they could access funds for FASD Day. We did that and then they did provide some funds so that we could provide some information and promotion around that day,” said Neufeld.
Neufeld also explained the significance of the day.
“On the ninth day of the ninth month the first FASD Day was held in 1999. They kind of chose the number nine to represent the nine months of pregnancy. That’s where that date came from,” said Neufeld.
For more information on the event you can contact Barry Rud at 857-8353 or Nancy Neufeld at 239-2429.