SMOKEFREE SPORTS CYMRU
We know that children copy behaviour, a child is two thirds more likely to start smoking if they have a parent who smokes. We also know that a classroom of children take up smoking everyday in Wales.
Our #SmokefreeSportsCymru campaign aims to raise awareness for young people of the dangers involved with this addiction and promote healthy lifestyle choices. As part of this campaign we will be working with sports leagues to promote healthy behaviours within their communities and encourage parents not to smoke around mini and junior sports activities.
Why Smokefree Sport?
Given the choice young people would like to participate and enjoy sport in a clean, healthy, smokefree environment. We recently surveyed 125 children with 99% saying they didn’t want adults smoking around them when playing sport.
We also asked the children if they thought smoking was common or uncommon in Wales and 88% said they thought smoking was common. When asked what percentage of people smoke in Wales the average answer was over half the population at 56%.
Children and young people are highly influenced by what they see around them and the “important” people in their lives. To ensure less children take up smoking, we need to denormalise smoking and change young people’s perceptions that smoking is a common activity.
Rhondda & District Juniors – Pilot Project
ASH Wales are partnering with FAW Trust in Spring 2019, launching a new project working with youth football teams in the Rhondda area of South Wales. As part of the project we are working with Rhondda & District Football League to encourage parents to stop smoking around mini & junior football, promote healthy behaviour to young players and provide support to parents who wish to quit.
Smoking rates in the Rhondda are one of the highest in Wales at 20% amongst its adult population. This campaign provides ASH Wales an opportunity to engage with parents in an environment which already promotes healthy lifestyle choices through engagement in sport. We also know from similar campaigns in Norwich and Hull that there is an appetite amongst parents/carers to promote initiatives that support not smoking in front of children.
Social Media Graphics
If you are involved with a sports team or facility and want to find out more about our Smokefree Sports campaign please contact Kimberley@ashwales.org.uk