Georgia Young Adult Program

Expand

Mission

The mission of the Georgia Young Adult Program is to promote education and awareness to young adults about highway safety issues, such as but not limited to; underage drinking, impaired driving, destructive decisions, and other high-risk behaviors, in order to decrease crashes, injuries, and fatalities. This program is achieved by training peer-educators, providing educational programs to the schools, and funding students to participate in area, state, and national highway safety related conferences.

The GOHS Young Adult Program originated in 2000, with two colleges, Georgia Southwestern and Paine College and has expanded to 17 colleges or universities in FFY 2010. The goal for FFY 2012 is to increase (to 19) the number of effective GYAP programs implemented on the college campuses and provide outreach to 100% of the accredited colleges in Georgia, focusing additional efforts in high risk areas.

The Young Adult Program is implemented in colleges and universities statewide, targeting ages 18 - 24 years.

Please contact me if you have any questions. I also welcome any suggestions and comments. Thank you, remember to buckle up and have a great day.

Sincerely,



Kelly Cutts
Young Adult Planner
Georgia Governor's Office of Highway Safety 
kcutts@gohs.ga.gov 

GEORGIA YOUNG ADULT PROGRAM

The GOHS Young Adult Program’s (GYAP) mission is to promote education and awareness to young adults about highway safety issues, such as but not limited to; underage drinking, impaired driving, destructive decisions, and other high-risk behaviors, in order to decrease crashes, injuries, and fatalities in young adult drivers and passengers.

This mission is achieved by training peer-educators, providing educational programs to the school, community and local high schools, as well as funding students to participate in area, state, and national highway safety related conferences. GYAP is implemented in colleges and universities statewide, targeting young adults 18-24 years of age. The overall goal for this program is to decrease the number of fatalities from motor vehicle crashes, since the number one cause of death in the U.S. for this population results from motor vehicle crashes.

BACKGROUND

Young drivers have a higher rate of crashes, injuries and fatalities than older drivers. In 2005, 229 young people ages 16 to 20 were killed in motor vehicle crashes. Although young people (ages 16-20) account for only 7% of Georgia’s population, they were responsible for 13% of the total crash fatalities for 2005. According to the most recent data from FARS (2003), 64% of the 16-20 year-old passenger occupants killed or seriously injured were unrestrained in vehicles. The inexperience and immaturity of younger drivers are thought to be major contributing factors in the higher fatality rate.

High-risk behavior, peer pressure, inexperience, limited use or no use of occupant safety devices, lack of proper driving information and education are a few of the problems that our youth face while driving on Georgia’s roadways.

GYAP originated in 2000, with two colleges, Georgia Southwestern and Paine College and has expanded to 14 colleges or universities in FFY 2005. The goal for FFY 2007 is to provide outreach to 100% of the accredited colleges in Georgia. The next page contains a list of the colleges/universities in FFY 2007 with GYAP.

TARGET POPULATION

Because the problems of alcohol impaired driving have the potential to affect all motorists, the target population is the motoring public to include young, inexperienced drivers ages 16-24.

GYAP Mission

The Georgia Young Adult Program (GYAP) mission is to promote education and awareness to young adults about highway safety issues, such as but not limited to; underage drinking, impaired driving, destructive decisions, and other high-risk behaviors, in order to decrease crashes, injuries, and fatalities in young adult drivers.

The Young Adult Program for colleges and universities in the state of Georgia focus on the following issues: alcohol education, alcohol abuse prevention, impaired driving, underage drinking, safety belts, speeding, risk reductions, and other destructive decisions. 

What Is Does the Georgia Young Adult Program (GYAP) Consist Of?

It is a peer education program for colleges and universities in the state of Georgia that focuses on the following issues:

• Alcohol education
• Alcohol abuse prevention
• Impaired driving
• Underage drinking
• Safety belts
• Speeding
• Risk reductions
• Other destructive decisions

Addressing these issues are achieved by developing and maintaining quality peer educators, resources that promote and support learning, and a caring environment that encourages peers to discuss and develop responsible habits, attitudes and lifestyles regarding alcohol and related issues. These achievements are parallel to those promoted through BACCHUS & GAMMA peer education network.

“BACCHUS” is an acronym for Boost Alcohol Consciousness Concerning the Health of University Students and “GAMMA” is an acronym for Greeks Advocating Mature Management of Alcohol.

Young Adult Program Ideas

There has been a request for program ideas and activities that other schools do in order to complete their program objective for the GOHS grant. The objectives states: Provide educational opportunities involving at least 50% of student population on the effects of alcohol and highway issues by the end of the school year. Therefore, below is a list of programs, ideas, and activities that other schools have done or suggested.

Presentations/Speakers: Money is in your budget to pay for a speaker. However, there is also Chris Sandy who is free! In addition, you could get a student panel of speakers discussing different aspects of alcohol/substance abuse and driving, or personal stories. Remember the biggest part of this is advertising the event to the student population at least 2 weeks prior to the event. It is also a good idea to have teachers on your side to encourage the students to attend by getting extra credit if they do so.

Designated Driver Program: I know not all students want to give up their weekend nights, but a successful program that UGA has created is called the ‘Watchdawgs’. The Watchdawgs are a volunteer group who drive student’s home on the weekends if a designated driver is needed. They have a location on Friday and Saturday night downtown, where students go if a ride is needed. Perhaps your school already has something like this? Then work with them because this would be an excellent opportunity to hand out educational brochures on drinking and driving, and other highway safety issues…Don’t forget to include some of the GOHS campaigns (Click It or Ticket, Operation Zero Tolerance, 100 Days of Summer HEAT)!!!

‘The GOHS Spot’: Of course you would put your name in the place of GOHS. For an example, if your name is the DIVAS, you would have ‘The DIVA Spot’. This would simply be a table or booth that you set up in a prime location on campus before a big event. You can create a game to give away incentives and of course have handouts on alcohol education and highway safety issues.

Roll-Over Event, Fatal Vision, and Driving Simulator: For those at the Callaway Conference, you saw all of these programs. Remember to advertise ahead of time, place the event in a prime location and have your teachers and student workers help encourage students.

Quarterly Flyer Campaign: Brainpower! Get together and create a flyer/poster that is relative to what is going on around campus or news. Create a catchy saying or slogan…get the attention of the students!

Alcohol Free Tailgate: This is always a great idea before any sporting event…weather it’s football or a weekend track meet! This is a great opportunity to set up a booth, hand out information, and just talk with the students about issues in their lives or on campus.

Community Coalition: It is important for the key stakeholders in the community to be involved with the alcohol/drug, highway safety, and the other issues that are on campus and in the community. Therefore, a coalition is a smart way to brainstorm the issues and come up with ideas on how to solve them. This group could meet once a year and the goal from the meeting would be to create task force groups to accomplish certain goals.

Summer Orientation: Many schools get involved with this by putting on a creative skit for the incoming students. This gives you a chance to get your program’s name out there and also a great way to RECRUIT new students!! Getting students when they’re in their first year is the best way!

MADD videos: Contact the national MADD office and have them come to your school to present a video on drinking and driving. This is a great presentation and I would encourage mass advertising before presenting this. If you were at the Callaway conference this past October, we presented it on the three big screens and it is only worth MADD coming all the way out there if you have at least 200 students to present it too.

Other Successful Ideas:

• Have weekly/monthly meetings for the peer educators to discuss new ideas and plan upcoming events.

• COMMUNCATE! With everyone that has a ‘hand-in’ on the alcohol/highway issues. People such as bar tenders, parents, teachers, police officers, etc.

• Develop relations with high schools, middle schools and elementary schools in the area. Have student workers/peer educators to go into these schools and put on programs related to bicycle safety (elementary schools), safety belt (middle schools), and alcohol/drug use (high schools).

• Correlate with a local SADD chapter at a high school and put on a “Ghost Out’.

• Visit the following websites for more ideas:

Interested in getting a grant and becoming apart of GYAP?

Every year in March, the application process for individuals to apply for grant money begins. GOHS now operates on an online grants management system, so all individuals interested in applying for a Young Adult (YA) can do so in an easy-to-use, automated manner. For additional information on how to be considered for a GYAP grant, contact Kelly Carlson using the information provided below:

GYAP Contact Information:

Kelly Cutts
Planner, GOHS
7 Martin Luther King Jr Drive, Suite 643
Atlanta, GA 30334
Office: 404.656.6996
Fax: 404.651-0197
kcarlson@gohs.ga.gov

GYAP Schools