News and Events

Clay County Students Working Against Tobacco Clubs Participated in Many Tobacco Prevention Projects This Fall!
December 1, 2019

The students participating in SWAT clubs were hard at work and made it known they will not be Big Tobacco’s Lab Rats!

On October 16, 2019 our local SWAT clubs participated in an event called “Not A Lab Rat” which is a statewide initiative that empowers youth to stand up and declare that they refuse to be the tobacco and e-cigarette industry’s “lab rats’ as we wait and see the long-term health effects of vaping.

The Oakleaf Jr. High / Oakleaf High SWAT Club created a bulletin board and posters that stated “Big tobacco is back with the same old tricks. This time, with e-cigarettes. Don’t let big tobacco experiment on you!” The club created a table and displayed a banner for the students to sign. SWAT president at Middleburg High School wrote on his card “I am…A leader who influences my peers to reject E-cigarettes.” Ridgeview High School’s SWAT club created boarders around the bathroom mirrors around campus with educational messages to spread awareness about the dangers of e-cigarettes. 

During the month of October SWAT also participated in Red Ribbon Week. Wilkinson Jr. High placed red ribbons around campus cultivating many questioning minds asking “why” giving the club members an opportunity to share all about Red Ribbon Week. The club also planted 100 red tulip bulbs to give the SWAT club members the responsibility of tending the garden as they await spring and the arrival of the tulips to remind them to always stay drug free. Keystone Heights High School had a door decorating contest displaying Halloween designs while sending home a straightforward message against the dangers of tobacco, drugs, and alcohol. Orange Park and Middleburg High school created a banner and had students sign a pledge card to stay drug free reaching over 1000 students between the two schools. Middelburg Elementary and Orange Park Elementary participated in their local school fall festival to spread awareness on the dangers of tobacco/e-cigarettes.

Middleburg High School’s SWAT club advisor, Bianca Montoro, and Community Health Advocate, Joy Moritz, attended a local board meeting where they received a signed proclamation from the Board of County Commissioners in support of Red Ribbon Week.

For the month of November, our local SWAT clubs participated in The Great American Smokeout, which is an event that was held on November 21, 2019 that challenges smokers to give up cigarettes for 24 hours or to take the final step toward quitting cigarettes forever. A few of the clubs displayed tables in the teacher’s lounge and prepared bulletin boards where they displayed information on ways to quit smoking using Florida's Quit Your Way Program.

Action News for Jax, News for Jax, and the Clay Today visited with Orange Park High School and Middleburg High School’s SWAT clubs sharing how the new epidemic of e-cigarettes is highly used by our underaged youth and the dangers that come with vaping.

For more information with our Clay County SWAT clubs please contact our Community Health Advocate