“Kick Butts" Day in Delco

Student artists create book marks with powerful anti-tobacco messages

Delaware County Council welcomed the student artists who were winners in the annual “Kick Butts Day Bookmark Contest” organized by the Delaware County Tobacco-Free Coalition.

While varying in color and characters, all the bookmarks had one message: don’t use tobacco.

County Councilman Michael Culp presented a “Kick Butts Day” resolution to members of the Delaware County Tobacco-Free Coalition and presented the student winners with certificates and county backpacks.

“Thanks to education and outreach efforts, we all know that tobacco use is bad for our health. While we have made progress in reducing tobacco use, nearly one in five Americans still smokes. And if the current trend in tobacco use continues, 9,200 Pennsylvania youth will become daily tobacco users,” said Councilman John McBlain.

“Sadly, almost 15 percent of eighth graders have already tried a tobacco product, whether it’s cigarettes, chewing tobacco, e-cigarettes or other tobacco products,” Culp said.

Most people have heard of the Great American Smokeout, held every November to encourage people to quit smoking. There is another important day focused on young people. March 21 was Kick Butts Day, a national day of activism that empowers youth to “stand out, speak up and seize control” against tobacco use.

During Kick Butts Day, students are encouraged to stay tobacco-free and to educate one another on the risks of all tobacco use. Unfortunately, the newer e-cigarette has meant an increase in tobacco use among students.

To raise awareness, the Delaware County Tobacco-Free Coalition sponsors an annual Kick Butts Day Bookmark Contest. Students in Kindergarten to Grade 8 throughout the county were invited to create original bookmarks that encourage a tobacco-free lifestyle for young people. The mission of the Bookmark Contest, which have been in place for a decade, is to empower Delaware County students to speak up against the dangers of tobacco use and to encourage their peers to kick the habit.

Student winners of the bookmark contest are: Belinda Kusi, Kyla Moore, Treasure Davis, Davin Miles, Amos Fayehun and Xavier Jackson.