Reporter: Lauren Compton l Videographer: Parker Slaybaugh
Lynchburg, VA- Health officials say they are seeing kids younger and younger start abusing alcohol. Statistics show right here in Lynchburg kids as young as 11 years old were treated in the hospital for drinking alcohol.
The HIPE Coalition hosted an Underage Drinking Prevention Town Hall at E. C. Glass High School Thursday night to draw awareness about the issue.
Health officials say kids who start drinking before the age of 15 are four times more likely to develop alcohol dependence. A lot of kids pick up the habit by watching how their parents consume alcohol or from friends. But there are some little things parents can do now to fight this problem.
"Parents can prevent this problem by knowing their child's whereabouts, monitoring where they go, knowing who they are with. It is also important to praise a children's good behavior so they know what they are doing well," said Jennifer Smith Ramney, representative from the Central Virginia Community Services.
If you missed the meeting, there are plenty of local groups that can help. You can call the Central Virginia Community Services for help at 434-948-4831 or by going to their website.