Locally, Bladen HealthWatch and its HealthWatchers at School program observed the event with "Quit Cold Turkey" exhibits at eight county schools, Bladen Community College, Bladen County Hospital and at the Healthy Lifestyle Center.
As an incentive for committing to live smoke-free by quitting smoking, staying 'quit,' or, by never starting to smoke, the HealthWatchers at School program awarded gift cards redeemable for a Thanksgiving turkey!
Nationally, Great American Smokeout occurs each year on the third Thursday of November-strategically on the week before Thanksgiving. The hope is that this timing will give new non-smokers a real opportunity to give thanks for improving their health by starting to break a deadly addiction to nicotine.
Winners of the HealthWatchers at School Quit Cold Turkey event drawings became eligible at their location by making a commitment to live a life free from tobacco.
Winners from the eight Bladen County Schools sites were: Kristen Deaver of Bladenboro Middle School; Corey Smith of Clarkton School of Discovery; Phyliss Holland of East Arcadia Elementary; Santana Smith of East Bladen High School; Heather Guyton of Elizabethtown Middle School; Margaret Lewis-Moore of School of Extended Hope; Chris Soloff of Tar Heel Middle School; and Michael Stokes from West Bladen High School.
Leah Roberts, a dual enrollment student from West Bladen High School won from the Bladen Community College site. Jackie Stringfield was the winner for the Bladen County Hospital exhibit.
Bladen HealthWatch offers a variety of tobacco prevention and cessation services to the public. If you would like information on this or another health-related topic, contact Bladen HealthWatch at 862-1499, Monday through Friday.
Bladen HealthWatch is a Healthy Carolinians Partnership of ten local agencies: Bladen County Hospital, Bladen County Schools, Bladen County Department of Social Services, Division on Aging, Bladen County Cooperative Extension Service, Bladen Center of Southeastern Regional Mental Health, Bladen Community College, Bladen County Library, Town of Elizabethtown, and the Bladen County Health Department.
The HealthWatchers at School program is funded through the Kate B. Reynolds Charitable Trust and administered through the Duke University Medical Center's Department of Family and Community Medicine.