International Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
Awareness Day


 (The following excerpt is taken from Health Canada's website on FAS/FAE)

A message from the Secretary of State for Children and Youth, the Honourable Ethel Blondin-Andrew:

“Since 1999, September 9, International FAS Day, has been a day for bringing messages of compassion, hope, solidarity and understanding about Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) and Fetal Alcohol Effects (FAE) to countries around the world. September is the ninth month, symbolic of the duration of pregnancy. Once again this year, we ask that at 9:09 AM on September 9, people take a moment of silence to reflect upon the significance of a healthy pregnancy.”

Information, Organizations & Support

 FAS/FAE Information Service
Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse
National Clearinghouse on Substance Abuse
75 Albert Street
Ottawa, ON K1P 5E7
Phone: 1-800-559-4514
(613) 235-4048

FAS/E Support Network of BC
14326 Currie Drive
Surrey, B.C. V3R 8A4
Phone: (604) 507-6675
The purpose of the FAS/E Support Network of British Columbia is to provide information, support and education for families, professionals and the broader community around prevention and intervention issues pertaining to alcohol-related birth defects, including Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and other disabilities caused by drug use during pregnancy

Vancouver YWCA Crabtree Corner
FAS Coordinator
FAS/NAS Prevention Project
101 East Cordova Street
Vancouver, B.C. V6A 1K7
Phone: (604) 689-2808

Description: Located in Vancouver’s downtown eastside, this centre sits in one of the most impoverished neighborhoods in the country. It provides advocacy, counseling and peer support to women parenting children with FAS/E. Staff provide information, resources, training, and workshops to a wide range of groups including parents, addictions workers, teachers, corrections workers, women in correctional facilities, high school students, Aboriginal Community Health Workers, and daycare workers.

Sheway Program
101 East Cordova Street,
Vancouver, B.C. V6A 1K7
Call (604) 689-2808
Fax (604) 689-5463
Or email us at:

Sheway provides services to pregnant women and those with infants under 18 months of age. Services include nutrition counseling, support to obtain medical care, housing and income assistance, prenatal and postnatal care from midwives, nurses and child development specialists, coupons for food and food bank hampers, parenting support, birth control and HIV counseling, alcohol and drug counseling, and referrals to other community resources.


Recommended Web Sites:
Health Canada's FAS website
Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Support Training Advocacy and Resouces (FASSTAR) is a website that offers training, information, and resources on FAS/ARND.

The Canadian Centre on Substance Abuse provides a directory of FAS/FAE information and support services in Canada.
FASworld was co-founded by volunteers in Toronto, and Tucson, Arizona, and is an international union of parents and professionals whose aim is to raise awareness of birth defects caused by alcohol consumed during pregnancy.
FAS Family Resource Institute is a non-profit organization whose purpose is to identify, understand and care for individuals disabled by prenatal alcohol exposure and their families. Services: referrals and support in finding help, information packets for parents and professionals, and a quarterly newsletter.
The Family Empowerment Network (FEN) is a national organization serving families affected by FAS/E, as well as professionals involved in their lives. This website contains reliable and useful information, written articles and suggested websites to help you understand FAS/E.
FAS Stars displays photographs and stories of children and adults with FAS and FAE. This site offers a unique personal perspective. While these faces appear to be ordinary individuals, the personal reflections shared here reveal the painful devastation that alcohol has inflicted on these precious lives.
Group of Moms who provide post-adoptive support to families who have adopted children who have been pre-natally exposed to drugs/alcohol.
The Arc’s FAS Resource and Materials Guide. Comprehensive site of good information and dozens of links.
Therapeutic games for cognitively impaired adolescent and adult sexual offenders and children with inappropriate sexual behavior. Commercial site devoted to marketing a therapeutic game for adolescent sexual offenders who either have FAS/FAE or are cognitively impaired.

Resources and Publications

Books, Manuals & Reports

A Manual on Adolescents and Adults with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome with Special Reference to American Indians
by A.P. Streissguth, R. Ladue & S. Randels

For information, contact:
Indian Health Service
Headquarters West, FAS Project
5300 Homestead Rd. NE
Albuquerque, NM 87110

Fetal Alcohol Syndrome:
A Guide for Families and Communities

By Ann Streissguth, Ph.D.

Aimed at professionals, families and communities, this book is readable and easy to understand. It conveys urgent information about medical and social issues surrounding FAS. It gives an overview of FAS, explains how to identify the disorder, how to work with children and adults who have it, how to talk to parents about it and how to prevent its occurrence through sensitive education of prospective mothers and society.

The Broken Cord
By Michael Dorris (1945-1997)
Published by Harper Perennial, 1989.

“A deeply moving book about a single Native father who must deal with his adoptive son’s Fetal Alcohol Syndrome. Throughout the book, we see Michael struggling to understand his son’s illness, unaware that he has FAS.” Michael Dorris, Sept. 24, 1996.
To read the author’s entire article, visit the following website:

Reaching Out to Children with FAS/FAE
By Diane Davis. Paperback, 192 pages. ISBN: 0876288573. Published by the Center for Applied Research in Education, December 1995.

A handbook for teachers, counselors and parents who live and work with children affected by FAS/E. It contains an overview of the causes, how it is diagnosed, and the common characteristics seen in these children. There are suggestions and techniques for establishing guidelines at home and school to deal effectively with appropriate and inappropriate behaviors.

Flour Babies
By Anne Fine. Paperback novel, 192 pages. Reading Level: Grades 9-12. Published by the Center for Applied Research in Education, December 1995.

A fictitious novel about students in an English boys school who learn about parenting by carrying around and writing about a ‘flour baby’, a six-pound bag of flour, over a three-week period. They must keep it clean and dry, maintain its weight and never, never leave its side. The consensus of one grade 8 class who took part in this activity is, “If people were only aware of what a bother babies are, they would never have any.”


The books listed below are available at: Parentbooks*
201 Harbord Street
Toronto,ON M5X 1H6
Open Monday to Saturday
(10:30 am to 6 pm EST)
Tel: (416) 537-8334

*Parentbooks stocks many books of interest to families and professionals on topics ranging from childbirth and infant care to education and health, parenting skills and psychology. Book lists are available on Parenting (various age levels), Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Learning Disabilities, and Early Childhood Education.

Fantastic Antone Succeeds:
Experiences in Educating Children with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
Edited by Judith Kleinfeld and Siobhan Wescott. University of Alaska Press, 1993.

This book is full of true stories about the children and families who must cope with the problems of FAS/E. A must-read book to assist caregivers in understanding how to relate to children with
FAS/E and help advocate for the special services that the child needs.

Fantastic Antone Grows Up:
Adolescents and Adults with Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
Edited by Judith Kleinfeld, with Barbara Morse & Siobhan Wescott. University of Alaska Press, 2000.

This is the sequel to Fantastic Antone Succeeds. Young people with FAS/E and their caregivers give accounts on their experiences coping with the problems of adolescence and young adulthood. This book contains hands-on, practical teaching methods, concrete communication, and visual-cuing strategies that work so well for individuals with these challenges.


Children with Prenatal Alcohol and/or Other Drug Exposure: Weighing the Risks of Adoption
By Susan Edelstein

This book is designed primarily for professionals working with prospective parents considering adopting an infant or child who has been pre-natally exposed to alcohol and/or other drugs.


Parenting Children Affected by Fetal Alcohol Syndrome: A Guide for Daily Living
2nd Edition revised and expanded by Sara Graefe

“This book will help parents, teachers, social workers, doctors and other professionals obtain what they need: information & education, support and understanding, referrals & services, realistic expectations and commitment.” Elspeth Ross, Parent and Researcher


7th Generation Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Prevention Project
Information available at website:

A video and curriculum guide developed to raise awareness and knowledge about FAS/E. The American Indian Institute has developed a learning module for classroom presentation to grades 6-8 Native students. Students will be active participants in the learning process.


“It Takes a Community”

Author and principal researcher: Marilyn Van Bibber

A resource manual for Community-based prevention of Fetal Alchol Syndrome and Fetal Alcohol Effects. Developed under the guidance of a national First Nations/Inuit Working Group within Canada, this manual includes the “Framework for the First Nations and Inuit Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and Fetal Alcohol Effects Initiative."

For free copies, please contact:
First Nations and Inuit Health Branch
Ottawa, Ontario K1A 0L3
Tel: (613) 954-8641
Fax: (613) 954-8107


Resource Guide for Aboriginal Community Workers

A guide has been developed by the B.C. Aboriginal Network on Disability Society to assist Aboriginal Community Workers in their work around FAS/FAE. It includes introductory information about FAS/FAE and describes eight main categories of resources.

To order: BCANDS, 1179 Kosapsum Crescent, Victoria, BC V9A 7K7. Tel: (250) 381-7303;
Toll-free 1-888-815-5511; Fax: (250) 381-7312. E-mail:


Situational Analysis: FAS/FAE and the Effects of Other Substance Use During Pregnancy

This report provides an overview of FAS/FAE-related activities across Canada, based on the results of key informant interviews and a survey of programs by Health Canada.

To order: Health Canada Publications, Tunney’s Pasture, Ottawa, ON K1A 0K9.
Tel: (613) 954-5995; Fax: (613) 941-5366.

Available online:


Fetal Alcohol Syndrome and the Criminal Justice System
By Julianne Conry & Diane Fast
ISBN # 0-9693767-2-3

Information about people with FAS and FAE in the criminal justice system. Judges, lawyers, probation and parole officers, those working within the legal system, individuals and their families will find this tool an excellent resource.

To purchase a copy, contact:
BC FAS Resources Society
P.O. Box 525
Maple Ridge, BC V2X 3P2
(604) 467-5591 T
(604) 467-7102 F



Pamphlets & Posters

Pregnant? No Alcohol.

Available in English and French from Health Canada, there is both a pamphlet and poster advising women not to drink alcohol during pregnancy.

To order:
Health Canada Publications,
Tunney’s Pasture, Ottawa, ON K1A 0K9.
Tel: (613) 954-5995; Fax: (613)941-5366

Information available online: brochure.pdf;

In addition, the following poster can be obtained at the same address mentioned above:

Healthy Parents, Healthy Babies, Alcohol and Pregnancy Don’t Mix

This poster is available in English and French and is being released in November 2001.


Video Resources

What is FAS?
24 min. Copyright 1989. No guide available.
Available from:
Luna Media
British Columbia
Telephone: (604) 943-4024

This educational video explores the effects of alcohol on the fetus, related birth defects, the characteristics of FAS children and adults, as well as the personal and social effects of this problem. It promotes prevention via public education, particularly of high-risk groups.


David with F.A.S.
“An unusual and striking film.” Vancouver Sun

Directed by Cree filmmaker
Gil Cardinal
44 min. Catalogue #: C9196 039/EC009
Can be purchased by contacting:
National Film Board of Canada
or On loan through local public libraries.

“Focusing on the human experience of fetal alcohol syndrome (FAS), this video centres around David Vandenbrink, a 21-year-old victim of FAS and his adoptive mother, Mary. Both are coping with the consequences of this difficult syndrome; David struggles internally, while Mary reaches out with teaching and advocacy.” NFB Catalogue 2000


Frances and Irene
16 min. Northwest Community College

Two cases are presented whereby both women are referred to different agencies for help. Both agencies emphasize healthy lifestyle practices to help in recovery from substance abuse. One of these offers a six-week residential program incorporating some traditional Native beliefs.


Life Sentence Fetal Alcohol Syndrome
16 min. CBC International Sales

FAS can lead to learning disabilities, poor judgment and antisocial behavior. New research suggests that Canadian prisons are full of victims of FAS, many of them undiagnosed. A study shows that 20-25 per cent of prison inmates have some degree of FAS.


A Mother’s Choice
27 min. Gryphon Productions

This video examines the root causes of FAS from the perspective of Native mothers. Focuses on FAS support group whose members provide strong messages about drinking while pregnant.


Preventing FAS
21 min. LENA Productions.

This video, for professionals in community development, education and health, looks at primary and secondary prevention of FAS. Primary prevention aims to reduce alcohol consumption generally and to raise public awareness of alcohol-related birth defects. Secondary prevention programs identify high-risk women, and help them to stop drinking.


Additional Video Resources:

Contact: FAS Bookshelf Inc.
#438-6540 E. Hastings Street,
Burnaby, B.C.
V5B 4Z5
Phone: (604) 942-2024
Fax: (604) 942-2041