Leavers and Aquatic Activities

A group of young people sitting along the edge of a deck holding alcoholic drinks with legs dangling into a swimming pool

Every year, thousands of recently graduated high school leavers converge on designated locations around Australia to celebrate the end of their school exams and secondary school experience while preparing for the next stage of their lives.

With Leavers events generally occurring around water and with an emphasis on aquatic activities, there is a strong need to better understand how much alcohol those attending Leavers festivals are consuming, the locations in which they drink and the activities they partake in whilst consuming alcohol.

A better understanding of these variables will allow for more targeted health promotion with the potential to develop new and innovative methods to approach the population under interest.

Our research

The aims of this research are to assess the knowledge and attitudes of Western Australia School leavers who consume alcohol around water during their Leavers week while determining the prevalence of the behaviour. This will be one of the first studies of its kind.

We assessed the frequency of alcohol consumption, determining the amounts of liquor consumed and attitudes towards drinking in and around water at Leavers in Dunsborough WA. Focus groups assessing participant perspectives, attitudes and behaviours in regards to alcohol and aquatic activity will also be ascertained in a non-judgmental environment.

This research has been conducted as part of an internal evaluation of the ‘Don’t Drink and Drown’ program run by the Royal Life Saving Society of WA, which assists with managing deterrence activities during the Leavers week at Rottnest and Dunsborough. Results will also be disseminated to the wider scientific community

The report can be downloaded at the link below.

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