We are thrilled to announce ALKU’s newest Employee Resource Group (ERG), Friends and Family of Alcoholism Support Team (FAST)! The mission of FAST is to create a safe place where employees can come together to share their experiences of alcoholism without judgment. FAST is sponsored by Nick Vignone and led by Nicholas Johnson!
Recently we sat down with Nic to ask him questions regarding himself and the future of FAST. Check out the FAST Table Talk below for all the details on ALKU’s newest ERG!
What is the goal of FAST?
To represent ALKU employees with a family member or a loved one struggling with Alcoholism and to create a safe place for them to share their experiences and support.
What motivated you to lead FAST?
I have a family member who struggles with Alcoholism, and I have dealt with the repercussions for most of my life.
How does FAST help to support members of the ALKrew?
Fast supports the ALKrew by creating a platform to hold open discussions, learn from others, and provide employees with a healthy outlet to deal with the associated stress.
What is the short-term goal of FAST?
Short term, we encourage employees to lean on each other when times get tough by discussing what is going on instead of suppressing it. To shed light on how many people may also be going through similar circumstances and emphasize that there are people who can help.
What are you most moved by since implementing the FAST ERG?
The amount of support I have received internally and how much of a positive impact talking about this publicly has had on me.
What do you hope the future of FAST will bring?
To bring awareness and get people talking about what they are going through. Nobody should carry this weight around alone, especially if it impacts you at work.
What are some things you want people to be aware of outside the group?
That this is a significant problem, and we have the opportunity to make an impact.
According to NCDAS (National Center for Drug Abuse Statistics):
- 141K Americans die from alcohol in the United States annually.
- 10% of Americans over the age of 12 have Alcohol Use Disorder
- Over 60% of Americans increased their alcohol consumption during Covid-19 Lockdowns
Internally, we have approximately 521 employees, which unfortunately means that based on these statistics, we have +/- 70 employees who may be dealing with this right now.
What is the long-term goal of FAST?
VTO Opportunities to help communities that may be impacted harder than others. Additionally, create a scholarship for children dealing with one or both parents struggling with Alcoholism. We aim to raise money for school supplies and provide funds for joining sports teams, summer camps, and college grants.
Friends and Family of Alcoholism Support Team (FAST) is a safe place where employees can come together to share their experiences of alcoholism without judgment. This group aims to eradicate stigma by sharing feelings and frustrations with others who understand the struggles of having a loved one dealing with alcoholism.