According to Lebogang Mashigo, Sustainability Manager at Diageo SA: “One of the most prominent issues raised during the Covid-19 pandemic lockdown in South Africa, is the serious impact that alcohol abuse has on the country and its people”.To help tackle this issue, Diageo South Africa has collaborated with the South African National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependency Soweto (Sanca Soweto) and local comedian and broadcaster, Felix Hlophe, to challenge South Africans to make more responsible drinking choices.
Diageo developed DrinkIQ.com to provide useful tools, facts and support around issues of alcohol consumption from alcohol’s potential health and safety dangers, for more enjoyable social experiences when taken in moderation, expert advice on how to enhance general physical and mental well-being, and where to find professional assistance where needed. The beverage company recently relaunched with a new look and feel to provide updated and comprehensive information on alcohol to the South African public.
“DrinkIQ is one of the initiatives we have implemented over the years to help curb the problem of alcohol abuse in South Africa. It is putting easily accessible information on alcohol consumption in the hands of consumers so that their knowledge is broadened, and they are able to make better and more responsible decisions when it comes to their drinking behaviour and instead increases their relationship with alcohol. We are raising the drink IQ of South Africans,” said Lebogang Mashigo, sustainability manager, corporate relations, Diageo SA.
The information is based on academic and medical research compiled and approved by internationally recognized industry bodies and includes important alcohol consumption guidelines, policies and regulations rubberstamped by governments around the world.
Hlophe said that his aim through DrinkIQ is to build onto his personal efforts to inspire young South Africans to use their talent for good and to help nurture their success.
“Success in life is often hindered by making the wrong choices and one of those choices is around alcohol. We need to encourage more responsible use and behaviour so that no one is prevented from achieving what they set out to do,” said the comedian. In addition to the informative online resource, DrinkIQ also offers a course and quiz, which visitors to the website can take to determine the effects of alcohol on them and to gauge whether their relationship with alcohol is a responsible one.
Sanca Soweto aims to reach 15,000 people over a period of four months with the platform, using course information and the quiz to educate the public and its clients about alcohol. This will be done through a series of activations, including targeting clients at five of its sites in Soweto; high traffic shopping malls such as Maponya Mall in Soweto; educational talks on alcohol at clinics; and motorists moving through Grasmere Toll Plaza near Soweto.
“Our partnership with Diageo SA and its DrinkIQ resource will ensure that we are able to enhance the content of our educational programmes with clients working through issues of alcohol dependency. We are also able to reach a broader community audience with information on alcohol and the potential effects consumption could have on them so that we are able to multiply our impact in society,” said Shamim Garda, national director, Sanca.