Friday, November 11

SU Ag Center’s Communities of Color Network set for state-wide Great American Smokeout Celebration

Baton Rouge, LA – The American Cancer Society has dubbed the third Thursday of every November as ‘The Great American Smokeout.’ Smokers are encouraged to use the date, which is November 17 this year, to make a plan to quit, or to plan in advance and quit smoking on that day.

In honor of this national event, the Southern University Ag Center’s Communities of Color Network (CoC) will host activities in Baton Rouge, New Orleans and Shreveport. (All events are free and will be held on November 17.)

Baton Rouge
Southern University students, faculty, staff and the Baton Rouge community are invited to attend the CoC’s Great American Smokeout event from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. at Fisher Hall on the Southern University Baton Rouge campus.  

The event will feature a seminar that will address the benefits of quitting smoking for the day with the hopes of quitting for good and a booth display that will provide attendees with an opportunity to enroll in smoking cessation programs. The Southern University Intramural Sports Department will also be on hand to get participants to substitute the butts and move to the beat of healthy living.

A “smoke out” of refreshments will be served off the grill to include: hamburgers, sausages, and hot dogs.  Participants will also receive collaterals with no smoking messages.

The CoC will also host a cessation presentation at the Bethesda Rehab Outpatient, 7222 Bluebonnet. The event, which will be held from 1 p.m. – 2 p.m., will also provide individuals with cessation resources to help them stop smoking and a demonstration on the harmful impact of tobacco on the body. 

For additional information on these events, contact Linda Brown or Frankie Poland at 225-771-2242.

New Orleans
The CoC Network invites residents of New Orleans to exchange their cigarettes for a “cold turkey” sandwich. Quit “cold turkey!”

During this event, which will be held from 11 a.m. – 2 p.m. on the Southern University New Orleans (SUNO) campus - 6400 Press Drive, people who visit the informational site will receive vital information that can save a life. They will exchange their cigarettes for “cold turkey” sandwiches to quit for the day.

The CoC’s staff and volunteers will also provide smoking cessation incentives, as well as, information about heart and vascular health.  A booth display will be available to ensure individuals receive resources for cessation and information regarding the dangers of tobacco.

For additional information, contact Hendrix Broussard at 504-736-6519.

Southern University at Shreveport (SUSLA) students, faculty and staff are invited to participate in an evening of smoke-free fun. The CoC will host if Shreveport Great American Smokeout event from 4 p.m. – 6 p.m. at the Shreveport Job Corps, 2815 Lillian Street. The event will feature a Bingo style game called, “What’s in Tobacco,” and a Cessation Workshop. Participants will also have an opportunity to visit a Secondhand Smoke Display and enroll in the smoking cessation trust.

For additional information, contact Urina Holt at, 318-670-9633.

“As an agent of change, Southern University Ag Center’s Communities of Color Network is ecstatic at the opportunity to mobilize our team and utilize our resources, to save lives through educational awareness activities that will permanently make a difference in the lives of our constituents statewide, especially as we celebrate Great American Smokeout Day,” Linda Early Brown, Director of the Communities of Color Network. 

About 40 million Americans still smoke cigarettes, and tobacco use remains the single largest preventable cause of disease and premature death in the world. While cigarette smoking rates have dropped (from 42% in 1965 to 17% in 2014), cigar, pipe, and hookah – as well as other dangerous and addictive ways to smoke tobacco – are very much on the rise. Smoking kills people – there’s no “safe” way to smoke tobacco.

Quitting smoking has immediate and long-term benefits at any age. Quitting is hard, but individuals can increase their chances of success with help. Getting help through counseling or medications can double or triple the chances of quitting successfully. By quitting – even for 1 day – smokers will be taking an important step toward a healthier life and reducing their cancer risk.

CoC is an affiliate of the Louisiana Public Health Institute/The Louisiana Campaign for Tobacco-Free Living. The network provides support and technical assistance to African-American communities to ensure that they are well-informed about the dangers of tobacco, and understand how to protect themselves from unhealthy exposure.

Its mission is to eliminate health inequalities caused by or related to tobacco use among Louisiana communities of color by building coalitions, increasing awareness of the dangers of tobacco, and reducing tobacco consumption and secondhand smoke exposure.

For additional information about the Communities of Color Network, contact Linda Early Brown at 225.771.2242.


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