Supporting Dry January® in your community

Here we answer some frequently asked questions about running Dry January® in your community to help you get the most from the campaign.

What is Dry January®?

Dry January® is the UK’s one-month alcohol-free challenge run by us, Alcohol Change UK. Every year, hundreds of thousands of people across the UK go alcohol-free for 31 days, using the tools and resources provided by us, including Try Dry® (the official app of Dry January®), daily coaching emails, and an active online community. 

The campaign began in 2013 and has been growing ever since, with over 215,000 people globally taking part in January 2024. As we head into Dry January® 2025, we are encouraging organisations like yours to come together to help people in your community to drink more healthily.

Why take part in your community?​

Learning new information and having a moment to reflect are key steps in deciding to make a behaviour change. For some individuals, your campaign could be the impetus that motivates them to make lasting change.​

What are the benefits of taking part in Dry January®?

A month without alcohol brings lots of benefits, like more energy, a chance to save some money, improved concentration, better sleep, boosted mood and so much more. It does you good on the inside. In fact, research shows that a month off alcohol leads to lower blood pressure, cholesterol and diabetes risk, as well as lower cancer-related proteins in the blood.

Dry January® is carefully designed by experts in behaviour change. It helps people break habits they’ve fallen into and make long-term changes for the better. It helps us remember that we don’t need alcohol to have fun, relax, celebrate, unwind or anything else. It puts you back in control of your drinking.

Evidence shows that people who do Dry January® with support from Alcohol Change UK are twice as likely to have a completely alcohol-free month and have significantly improved wellbeing and lower alcohol health risks six months later.   

How can community groups get involved?

Encouraging people in your community to download our Try Dry® app or sign up for motivational emails can help them double their chance of having a totally alcohol-free month and get the amazing, lasting benefits Dry January® can bring. The app also allows people to set custom goals for managing their drinking year-round.

People who sign up receive:

  • Daily motivational emails. These have high open and engagement rates throughout the month.
  • Our free Try Dry app. The app helps people to measure and manage their drinking during January and throughout the year.
  • Access to an online community of others taking part in Dry January®.

Throughout January, local areas across the country run events and displays using free downloadable resources provided by Alcohol Change UK, as well as using a set of images for their social media campaigns. These free resources will be available in Autumn 2024.

Who is Dry January® for?

Dry January® is for anyone who feels like they’re drinking a bit too much, or too often … or just feels like they could do with some time off from alcohol. It’s particularly effective for increasing risk and higher risk drinkers.

Note: Increasing risk drinking is defined as drinking more than 14 but less 35 units a week for women, or more than 14 but less than 50 units a week for men. Higher risk is regularly drinking above these levels, while lower risk drinking is not regularly consuming more than 14 units a week.

How can people take part in Dry January®?

It's easy to take part. Participants can simply:

  • Download the free Try Dry® app via the App Store or Google Play
  • Or, if preferred, take part via the Alcohol Change website at dryjanuary.org.uk and sign up to receive daily emails with tips, stories from other participants and so much more.  

How should the Dry January® brand be used? 

Dry January® is a trademark of  Alcohol Change UK. Therefore, we kindly request that any references to Dry January® are only used to describe people signing up to take part in the Dry January® challenge created by us, Alcohol Change UK, using the tools and resources we provide such as Try Dry® (the official app of Dry January®) and our daily email coaching programme.  

Research shows that anyone taking part in Dry January®, from Alcohol Change UK, is twice as likely to be successful in completing the challenge and change their drinking habits longer-term, compared to those who try to avoid alcohol on their own in January. Therefore, to ensure people get the most positive benefits from the challenge, it's important that when promoting the campaign you are clear on what it means to take part and only share Alcohol Change UK created resources which we’ll share with you in the run up to the campaign.  

Warning about alcohol dependency

Although Dry January® is safe for most people, it isn't right for anyone who is alcohol-dependent. Therefore, it's important to share information on alcohol withdrawal to anyone who might be at risk.

Alcohol withdrawal warning

People who are clinically alcohol dependent can die if they suddenly, completely stop drinking.

If you experience fits, shaking hands, sweating, seeing things that are not real, depression, anxiety, or difficulty sleeping after a period of drinking and while sobering up, then you may be clinically alcohol dependent and should NOT suddenly, completely stop drinking.

But you can still take control of your drinking. Talk to a GP or your local community alcohol service who will be able to get help for you to reduce your drinking safely.