Kick Butts Day is a national day of activism that empowers youth to stand out, speak up and seize control against Big Tobacco. This year’s Kick Butts Day is March 16, 2016. More than 1,000 events are expected to take place in schools and communities across the United States and even around the world.
On Kick Butts Day, teachers, youth leaders and health advocates organize events to:
• Raise awareness of the problem of tobacco use in their state or community;
• Encourage youth to reject the tobacco industry’s deceptive marketing and stay tobacco-free; and
• Urge elected officials to take action to protect kids from tobacco.
Kick Butts Day is organized by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. The first Kick Butts Day was held in 1996. The Breathe IN Wayne County Coalition hosts an annual Tobacco Free Art Contest to celebrate Kick Butts Day. Wednesday, March 17th at 5:30pm there will be an open house and awards ceremony in the MacDowell Gallery on the 2nd floor of Reid Health; for more information call Erin Ferguson at 765-935-8997.
The artwork is submitted from different parts of the county including Mr. Evrard’s Art Class (Centerville High School) and Ms. McKibben’s Health Class (Richmond High School) and Ms. Dortha King’s afterschool kids (Townsend Community Center).
Jordan Wolfe, senior at Lincoln High School, whose entry was extremely popular on the Coalition’s Facebook page wrote, “I was inspired to create this piece by the popularity of “The Walking Dead” and other horror-themed shows. I wanted to create this piece because I’ve always enjoyed working with mixed media. I really wanted to make the harmful effects of tobacco a key point on this project. The purpose is to show the metaphor that smoking is, quite literally, death in a box.”
Because the contest focuses largely on prevention, many pieces focus on the harmful effects of tobacco use, like the increased risk of lung cancer and the “unattractiveness of the act of smoking” making a person less desirable to kiss (pictured above with Shelbie Warner).
The Breathe IN Wayne County Coalition can provide support for people who use tobacco and who want to quit. Stats say that 7 out of 10 adult smokers want to quit; there are resources to help people quit. The Indiana Tobacco Quitline, 1-800-QUIT-NOW, is an evidence based phone counseling service that is free to Hoosiers.
Additional tools that have proven successful in helping people quit tobacco include: Nicotine Replacement Therapy (NRT) like the patch or gum, Group programs like American Lung Cancer’s Freedom from Smoking, and local health care providers. New research supports combining quitting techniques like behavioral therapy and NRT. Seeking advice from your doctor or the Indiana Tobacco Quitline can make the difference between quitting and continuing the harmful habit.