STUDENTS and young carers staged a pioneering fundraising event where smoking wasn’t allowed on site.
The Denton Community College Saturday Summer Blast was held on 14 July at the college and featured Health MOTs, educational workshops, birds of prey and other activities.
This was their 7th annual summer fair which raises donations for the college and it was well suited to promote healthier lifestyles, including being smokefree.
Smokefree events, facilitated by the Population Health team at Tameside Council, are about de-normalising smoking and reducing children and young people’s exposure to smoking behaviour.
In 2018, over 10,000 members of the public have attended smokefree events in Tameside. This has been the most successful year to date - events have been well received by organisers, stall holders and members of the public.
In Tameside 17.6% of the population smoke; one of the highest rates in the North West and the Greater Manchester ambition is to reduce this to 13% by 2020 and 5% by 2035. It’s a behaviour that can be learnt from a young age and it’s estimated that nearly all smokers have started before they’re 18.
Research has shown that 85% of people in Greater Manchester agree and strongly agree that smoking outdoors in front of both children and young people sets a bad example, confirming there’s an appetite to increase smokefree spaces at similar events.
Hayley Duffy, Director of Community Learning at Denton Community College, said: “I’m really proud of our students for all their hard work towards our summer event and suggesting that it be smokefree. This annual event is one of the best times for us to connect with our partners in the local community, who have always been receptive to the health messages we’ve shared with them.”
Cllr Ged Cooney, Tameside Council Executive Member for Health, said: “I hope the continued success of our smokefree events encourages more event organisers to sign up and get involved. It’s vital we instil healthy behaviours from a young age, which includes holding outdoor family events in Tameside where smoking is not permitted. Unfortunately smoking is a habit that can be picked up at an early age and we’re actively looking for ways to combat that.
“The staff and students at Denton Community College have all done a great job and been an inspiration in their continued promotion of health lifestyles.”
For more information or to find out how you can make your event smokefree please email Victoria.Hamlett@tameside.gov.uk.
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