WOONSOCKET, R.I., March 16, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- The CVS Health Foundation, a private foundation created by CVS Health (NYSE: CVS), today announced the second round of grants awarded in partnership with the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids through the "Making the Next Generation Tobacco-Free" grant program. The new grants are part of Be The First, CVS Health's $50 million, five-year initiative to help deliver the nation's first tobacco-free generation, and extend the company's commitment to help people lead tobacco-free lives.
The announcement of a new group of grantees coincides with Kick Butts Day, the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids' national day of activism that empowers youth to stand out, speak up and mobilize their communities in fighting tobacco use. In partnership with Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, CVS Health Foundation has committed $5 million in grants over five years to nonprofit organizations that are committed to educating young people about the dangers of tobacco.
"In just one year, we've seen great progress from our grantees awarded through our partnership with the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids," said Eileen Howard Boone, President of the CVS Health Foundation. "We're proud to provide support to organizations that are helping to empower youth to speak out on tobacco issues in their communities. By working together, we can help deliver the first tobacco-free generation."
While youth smoking has fallen to record lows, youth use of some tobacco products, especially electronic cigarettes, is on the rise. Additional support and resources can accelerate progress and help end tobacco use among America's youth. Together, CVS Health Foundation and Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids aim to reduce youth tobacco use, especially among at-risk populations, increase youth engagement in tobacco prevention activities, and educate the public about the problem of and solutions to youth tobacco use in local communities.
"We know that 95 percent of adult smokers start smoking before age 21. As a result of the grants offered through the CVS Health Foundation, our community partners are able to expand tobacco prevention resources and encourage youth that don't use tobacco to ever start," said Matthew L. Myers, President, Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. "We share a very important goal with the CVS Health Foundation – making the next generation tobacco-free – and are very thankful for their continued support."
To continue its support of tobacco-free living and move one step closer to the first tobacco-free generation, the CVS Health Foundation today announced seven new grantees, which include:
- Southeastern (Connecticut) Regional Action Council, in support of training high school youth to administer a statewide education program to elementary and middle school youth
- New Jersey Global Advisors on Smokefree Policy, in support of expanding its reach to serve more communities
- Southwest Louisiana Area Health Education Center, in support of addressing youth tobacco use through a musician mentorship program
- North Carolina Alliance for Health, in support of building a network of trained youth and adult leaders who actively support efforts to reduce the impact of tobacco use
- National Association of School Nurses, in support of a program that will educate at-risk youth and their families in low-income communities on the risks of e-cigarettes
- Arizona UMOM New Day Centers, in support of a teen activity program that will provide intervention programming and interactive workshops
- Rhode Island Mentoring Partnership, in support of integrating tobacco prevention training and activities into existing direct service mentoring programs for elementary and middle school aged youth
In March 2015, the CVS Health Foundation announced its first round of grantees to be awarded through the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids grant program. Key accomplishments from the first six months of funding include:
BREATHE California of Los Angeles County conducted 32 tobacco prevention workshops in 32 schools, reaching a total of 1,942 youth. Activities included administering pre- and post- tests to students participating in the program to assess their knowledge of tobacco. Following the curriculum, 72 percent of participants were able to identify three ways that tobacco is harmful to the body, 76 percent of participants were able to identify three ways to reduce the harm that comes from smoking and 62 percent of participants spoke with their family and friends about the dangers of smoking.
The California School-Based Health Alliance (Oakland, CA) selected five School-Based Health Centers to participate in a tobacco peer education learning collaborative, which included how to conduct student-led community needs assessments, how to create impactful school-wide events and an overview of tobacco education resources including the Kick Butts Day website. All grantees will be participating in monthly webinars on positive youth development, emerging trends in tobacco, and project updates.
The Health Promotion Council of Southeastern PA (Philadelphia, PA) expanded its Advocacy Institute, which assembled a group of youth advocates to create and launch the #RealTalkTobacco's #PHILLY1st campaign which is working together to make Philadelphia the first city with a zero percent youth smoking rate.
Ohio Public Health Partnership (Columbus, OH) executed an intense marketing campaign in partnership with Tobacco-Free Kids Ohio to highlight the current state of youth tobacco use and nicotine addiction. As a result, awareness among youth in Ohio has increased. In addition, a social studies-based curriculum is being promoted in several counties and has been adopted by two large middle schools in Medina County.
Last week, CVS Health announced Be The First, a five-year, $50 million initiative to help deliver the first tobacco-free generation and extend the company's commitment to helping people lead tobacco-free lives. With support and funding through CVS Health and the CVS Health Foundation, Be The First supports comprehensive education, advocacy, tobacco control and healthy behavior programming delivered by a group of national partner organizations. For more information about Be The First and CVS Health's broader commitment to tobacco-free living, please visit www.cvshealth.com/be-the-first.
About CVS Health CVS Health is a pharmacy innovation company helping people on their path to better health. Through its approximately 9,600 retail pharmacies, more than 1,100 walk-in medical clinics, a leading pharmacy benefits manager with more than 75 million plan members, a dedicated senior pharmacy care business serving more than one million patients per year, and expanding specialty pharmacy services, the Company enables people, businesses and communities to manage health in more affordable and effective ways. This unique integrated model increases access to quality care, delivers better health outcomes and lowers overall health care costs. Find more information about how CVS Health is shaping the future of health at https://www.cvshealth.com.
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SOURCE CVS Health Foundation