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Subject: SRI

Ohio Traffic Safety Office Awards $306,000 Grant for the "RADD Ohio" Project

COLUMBUS, Ohio, Jan. 16, 2024 /PRNewswire/ -- The Ohio Traffic Safety Office (OTSO) has awarded the RADD Ohio grant to promote awareness of the dangers of drug and alcohol impaired driving among young adults ages 18-25. The grant will fund RADD Project's outreach through social media, college campus events and activations at concert venues and music festivals in Columbus, Cincinnati, and Cleveland. 

Conducted by the Higher Education Center for Alcohol and Other Drug Misuse Prevention (HECAOD) and Recording Artists Against Drunk Driving (RADD), the RADD Ohio Project works to reach its target audience where they study, live, work and play. RADD Ohio utilizes social media (https://www.instagram.com/radd.ohio/) to reach and stay top of mind with the target audience through relevant, educational content and by engaging diverse young musicians to speak directly to their fans to remind them to always plan ahead for a safe ride home before going out and never get behind the wheel after consuming alcohol or using marijuana.

For 2024, RADD will continue to expand its outreach to become more active in the "3C" communities it serves. According to Coby Williams, RADD's Ohio's community outreach and engagement consultant, "Our goal with our partners is always to work together towards a mutual goal of preventing impaired driving. This year, we've worked with great organizations like Vision Zero Columbus and the Short North Alliance to get relevant content in front of our target audience at several activations. We look forward to growing these relationships and forming new ones in 2024."

Kicking off this year strong, RADD Ohio was the main stage sponsor of Columbus's Highball Halloween in October 2023 that brought over 8,500 people together for the nation's most elaborate costume party. The new year will see RADD Ohio's return to the Classic for Columbus College All-Star Basketball Game in April and expanded concert activations at multiple venues in Columbus, Cincinnati, and Cleveland through partnerships with AEG/Promowest, LIVE Nation and MEMI. RADD Ohio also plans to partner with several large festivals in the Cleveland and Columbus areas.

Looking forward to the new year ahead, RADD's President Erin Meluso commended the RADD Ohio funders from the Ohio Traffic Safety Office, along with the Ohio State Highway Patrol, Columbus City Council, Vision Zero Columbus, local law enforcement, and Ohio's music community for each of their contributions toward reducing substance-related death and injury crashes throughout 2024. She commented, "What we do wouldn't be possible without the support from these amazing organizations and people. Having strong partners believe in the RADD Ohio cause enough to contribute and want to see it thrive has been key to our recent expansion."


RADD Ohio is a collaborative effort between the Ohio Traffic Safety Office, RADD-Recording Artists Against Drunk Driving, and the Higher Education Center for Alcohol and Drug Misuse Prevention and Recovery at The Ohio State University, plus partnerships with entertainment venues through AEG/PromoWest, local radio stations and Ohio universities statewide to educate young adults on the importance of making a plan before they go out to get everyone home safely. To learn more, please visit www.raddohio.org.

About RADD 
California-based RADD has been honored with three prestigious national awards, two National Highway Traffic Safety Association Lifesavers Awards and one Governors Highway Safety Association Award in acknowledgement of its outstanding DUI prevention work with teens, younger adults ages 18-34, and communities, inclusive of regional and national coalition-building. As a proud member of the Governors Highway Safety Association (GHSA) and the National Alliance to Stop Impaired Driving (NASID), RADD's primary focus is creating lifestyle-oriented alcohol and drug driving prevention programming for college students. The RADD Ohio Project is the pilot for a national model that will be expanding to other states in 2024. To learn more, please visit www.raddohio.org and www.safestreetsinitiative.org 

About the Higher Education Center for Alcohol and Drug Misuse Prevention and Recovery (HECAOD)
An academic center at The Ohio State University, the Higher Education Center for Alcohol and Drug Misuse Prevention and Recovery (HECAOD) is a collaboration between the College of Social Work, College of Pharmacy and the Office of Student Life. It provides tools, training and technical assistance to campus professionals working to address collegiate substance misuse across the continuum. For more information on HECAOD, please visit https://hecaod.osu.edu/

About the Ohio Traffic Safety Office
As a division within the Ohio Department of Public Safety, OTSO's mission is to save lives and reduce injuries on Ohio's roads through creative leadership, innovative education and comprehensive enforcement programs. OTSO strives to work in partnership with local, state and federal entities to advance equity in highway safety programs, ensuring they benefit all road users in Ohio. For Federal Fiscal Year 2024, OTSO awarded over $23 million for statewide programming to improve traffic safety and reduce traffic-related fatalities.


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