As you read this, somewhere in our state a child is trying tobacco for the first time, and one out of every two will become regular tobacco users. What can we, as educators, physicians, counselors, medical professionals and mentors do to combat this epidemic of tobacco use among youth?
Tar Wars is a nationwide tobacco-free education program for fourth and fifth grade students. The program was developed in 1988, and has been implemented in all 50 states as well as internationally and has reached more than 7 million children worldwide. Volunteer presenters deliver the Tar Wars message to students at no cost to schools.
Tar Wars consists of two components: a classroom presentation and a poster contest. Health professionals and health career students present the curriculum provided by the American Academy of Family Physicians, addressing issues such as the short-term, image-based consequences of tobacco use and how to think critically about tobacco advertising. A follow-up poster contest at the school, regional, state, and national levels is conducted to reinforce the Tar Wars message.
Help Tar Wars in the fight against tobacco use by allowing LSUHSC Medical Students, ULM Pharmacy Students and North Louisiana AHEC Educators to present this award-winning program to your fourth or fifth grade classes.
If your school is interested in participating in the Tar Wars program, please contact North Louisiana AHEC at (318) 746-4677 .
If you would like more information about the Tar Wars program, please feel free to visit www.tarwars.org