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Improved Learning through better Health, Nutrition and Education for the School-Age Child.
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Tobacco and the tobacco free school
Tobacco and the tobacco free school
Tobacco use is one of the chief preventable causes of death in the world. The adverse health effects of tobacco use among smokers are well described. Tobacco use generally begins during adolescence and continues through adulthood sustained by addiction to nicotine. Recent trends indicate an earlier age of initiation and rising smoking prevalence rates among children and adolescents. If the trend continues tobacco use will result in the deaths of 250 million of the people who are children and adolescents today.
In recent years many health agencies have called for concerted action against tobacco use among young people and for more data and information on tobacco use among school children. To supply the data the Global Youth Tobacco Survey project was conducted in 12 countries in 1999 to provide more information on tobacco use among school children and enhance the capacity of countries to design, implement and prevent their own tobacco control and prevention programs. The survey showed that among children 13-15 years old among 10-33% smoked, more frequent among boys than girls. One fifth or more of young people begin smoking before the age of 10 years. There is a higher risk of being addicted, or become heavy smokers when you initiate smoking so young. The survey also showed that laws restricting the sale of tobacco to young people are seldom enforced
Evaluation studies of 10 US located prevention programs in schools have shown sustained reduce in tobacco and alcohol use. Evaluation of Life skills training targeting 4,466 7th graders showed 50-70% reduced tobacco and alcohol use with significant impact after three years. The Star program similar reduced tobacco, alcohol and marihuana use by 30% in 4,978 6th and 7th graders. The conclusion of this study is that prevention in schools is most effective when school lessons are reinforced by a clear, consistent social message that teen, alchohol, tobacco and drug use is harmful, unacceptable and illegal. Involving families and communities, as many of these curricula do, is very important
The vast majority of children exposed to tobacco smoke (ETS) do not choose to be exposed. Given that more than a thousand million adults smoke worldwide, WHO estimates that around 700 million or almost half of the world’s children breathe air polluted by tobacco smoke.
The large number of exposed children and the evidence that environmental (ETS) causes illness in children constitutes a substantial public health threat. Governments have a responsibility to legislate to control exposure to tobacco smoke in public spaces such as schools. Educational strategies, including effective education on health risks to children are likely to be more effective when cultural specific public policy is in place. The overall goal is to protect this vulnerable group from exposure and support and help them avoid starting unhealthy smoking habits and addiction .
No smoking in schools by teachers and students
No selling of cigarettes to children.
No tobacco advertising and promotion.
Higher tobacco prices and no possibility to purchase cigarettes one by one.
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Save the Children