My name is Nicholas Azar and I attended my first Alcoholics Anonymous meeting when I was five years old. I was obviously not there as a participant, but instead as a supporter of my grandfather for another year of sobriety. That was for his 46th “AA Birthday”. This past August we celebrated his 59th AA Birthday!
Over the years my grandfather and I have had countless discussions about underage drinking and illicit drug use. As a child growing up in New York City, he started drinking when he was 8 years old and feels blessed to still be alive today to watch my sister and me grow up.
A few years ago he offered to financially incentivize my sister and me to not drink alcohol until we were 21 years old. Perhaps we were being naïve to think we would not be tempted to do so. Nevertheless the discussions ensued about his reason for offering and progressed to why don’t we do something to encourage other teenagers to commit to sobriety during their at risk years for engaging in alcohol or illicit drug use. From this the “Live Golden Foundation” was born.
My sister, Isabel, and I took the Live Golden pledge on May 13, 2012. My grandparents presented the idea to us and put aside money for us if we abstain from using drugs and from drinking alcohol until the legal age.