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Wednesday 24 Sep 2014

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CBBC's Newsround tackles issue of alcohol in children's lives in special documentary

Newsround, television's only daily news programme made for children, is to screen a special programme for CBBC exploring the issue of alcohol and how adults' drinking affects children's lives.

Living With Alcohol – A Newsround Special will be presented by Bafta Award-winning presenter Barney Harwood and will tell the story of three children whose lives have been affected by their parents' relationship with drink.

Newsround has also commissioned a survey from Childwise, the UK's leading research specialist on children, young people and their families, to better understand how children perceive adults around them drinking. Childwise spoke to 1,234 children aged between 10 and 14.

Previous Newsround specials, which have covered difficult subjects in an accessible and helpful way, include recent reports on internet safety, bullying and bereavement.

In Living With Alcohol, Newsround talks to Liam, who was eight years old when his dad died after a battle with alcohol addiction. He recalls the mood swings that came with his dad's drinking and how his attitude to alcohol is now different from his friends'.

Eight-year-old Madison lives in a pub and knows a lot more about alcohol than her friends. She thinks it's OK for adults to drink as long as they don't overdo it.

Ben's mum used to drink four bottles of whisky a day. He talks about how it felt having a mother who was so drunk she didn't know what time of day it was. She's now in recovery and is determined to give her son the best life ever.

Damian Kavanagh, Controller of CBBC, said: "Newsround has a great track record in covering complex issues in an engaging and helpful way. There has been much discussion about levels of drinking but the social impact is rarely explored from a child's point of view.

"Alcohol is present in the lives of most of our audience in one way or another, yet it is something they may not feel confident talking about. The children in this Newsround Special talk about the impact of adults drinking on their lives. Talking about their own experiences, they provide insight and can help other children have the confidence to ask questions."

Owenna Griffiths, editor of Newsround, said: "Alcohol can be viewed as a taboo subject when it comes to children. But it is around them, and we wanted to acknowledge it as a subject that many of them would have questions about.

"The programme explores kids' attitudes towards adults drinking – how it makes them feel, whether it has influenced how they will behave when they're older and what they think is too much to drink."

Living With Alcohol – A Newsround Special and the results of the survey will broadcast on BBC One on 5 July 2010 at 4.55pm.

Notes to Editors

Newsround is television's only daily current affairs programme specifically made for young people. It has been dedicated to bringing children the news for over 37 years, making the important issues of the day relevant and easily understandable.

Presented live by Ore Oduba and Sonali Shah, Newsround now has its very own news bureau in Manchester. The show covers all the latest news from the nations and regions, to uniquely deliver world-class journalism exclusively for children and young people across the UK.

As well as delivering up-to-the-minute news, Newsround's website also encourages children to share their own views and engage in debates by joining chats on the message boards, voting on the issues that matter to them, testing their wits in a choice of quizzes and watching the amazing press pack reports made by other Newsround viewers.


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