|Healthy Behaviors - Tobacco Prevention and Control |
LABEL ME: TOBACCO FREE
The Rapides Foundation’s Tobacco Prevention and Control Initiative continued in 2012, focusing on young people in schools, adults in the workplace and people of all ages in their communities.
About 350 students and grant coordinators from throughout Central Louisiana gathered in Alexandria for the Youth Summit on Tobacco Prevention and Control. The summit, funded by The Rapides Foundation and implemented by the Central Louisiana Area Health Education Center, was designed by youth for youth. Participants learned how tobacco companies target young people and how to fight back in their communities. The summit’s theme was “Label Me: Irreplaceable” and it featured Rick Bender, a national speaker who lost most of his jaw to tobacco-related cancer. The turnout for the daylong event was about three times more than the 2011 event.
Also in the year, young people from Avoyelles, Natchitoches, Rapides and Winn parishes participated in Great American Smokeout events. The Great American Smokeout is held nationally to help spotlight the dangers of tobacco use and the challenges of quitting.
The Central Louisiana Area Health Education Center also trained junior high and high school youths to present Tar Wars information to students in grades 4 and 5. Developed by the American Academy of Family Physicians, Tar Wars is an award-winning, tobacco-free education program geared to students in the fourth and fifth grade.
In addition to focusing on young people, the Foundation’s Tobacco Prevention and Control Initiative reached people of all ages in its countermarketing efforts. These ads spotlighted concerns around secondhand smoke, youth and young adult tobacco use, and the health consequences of tobacco use.