The regional public charitable organization "Drug Abuse Prevention Centre" had got a grant of the President of the Russian Federation for the development of civil society and has started the project "Alcohol-free Pregnancy".
Alcohol consumption during pregnancy causes a whole range of medical and social problems. In St. Petersburg, up to two-thirds of pregnancies are in the zone of probable risk of alcohol exposure to the fetus. Despite the fact that the development of fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS) and fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD) in general may be completely prevented, the level of these disorders is intolerably high (at times higher than the number of children with Down's syndrome and autism). Within the framework of the proposed project, it is planned to develop and implement a set of measures to increase awareness of women and the whole population about the influence of alcohol on the future child, to involve a wide range of specialists in the prevention of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders and to change the behavior of pregnant women with regard to alcohol. It’s expected, this in turn, will lead to a decrease in the number of children who are born with the consequences of antenatal exposure to alcohol.