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Kick Butts Day at Mattamuskeet Early College HS

Kick Butts Day (KBD) is a national day that empowers youth to stand up, speak out and encourage others not to use tobacco products. This year, the Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids registered more than 1,000 events in schools and communities across the US.  The Hyde County Health Department and LEAD team (Lakers Educating for Awesome Decisions) members from Mattamuskeet Early College High School were proud to take part by in KBD activities with education stations and a message in the fence. Student leaders Xavier Gibbs, Nia Whitfield, Khelci Hostetler, Evelin Coronel, Christopher Spencer and Destini Chance hosted educational tables with visual aids, activities, a pledge wall banner, cups in the fence and morning school announcements with the assistance of school nurse Stephanie Stewart, school counselor Jamie Cohick and health educator Anna Schafer.

KHELCI HOSTETLER AND CHRISTOPHER SPENCER explain the harmful effects of tobacco products to their peers at Mattamuskeet Early College High School.

Students from grades 6-12 visited tables set up in the gymnasium and learned about the health risks of tobacco products (including electronic cigarettes), secondhand smoke and chewing tobacco. Student leaders Khelci Hostetler and Christopher Spencer led a peer tobacco free session with questions related to health effects and visual images on display at their prevention station, Destiny Chance and Nia Whitfield encouraged students to sign a banner pledging to stay tobacco free or to quit and Xavier Gibbs and Evelin Coronel hosted a station displaying information on cigarettes and secondhand smoke.

“It is important for us to recognize Kick Butts Day,” stated Anna Schafer with the Hyde County Health Department, “because I have learned that more than 3,000 kids under 18 try smoking for the first time and 700 kids become new regular, daily smokers. Also tobacco use is still the leading cause of preventable death in the U.S., killing more than 480,000 people every year.”