COMPREHENSIVE, CONSISTENT PROGRAMMING What does that mean? You may not like the answers.
1. Involve youth in programming. This means in program design, as presenters (and pay them, you pay speakers from off the reservation). Have them write essays on what would make them quit smoking, letters to the editor, letters to congress. Have them design posters and create them with drawings or on the computer. Put students with special needs in groups with students without disabilities. Correct spelling and grammar in their essays, letters and posters. School's first job is academic instruction and this is even more needed by children in special education. Preventive health should be part of academic instruction, not a substitute for it. Students who write more become better writers. In the process, they can learn about tobacco use along with computer skills and social skills.
2. Focus on short-term outcomes. Nurse Nancy Andrews, in her presentations on the Spirit Lake Reservation, talks about "smokers' breath". The fact is many people who don't smoke think smokers have bad breath. When you first meet a person, they make decisions on first impressions. They may be thinking about kissing you, get close and be turned off.
3. "Counter marketing" is simply advertising to counter the advertising of tobacco companies. It can include focusing on tobacco smoke as a trigger for asthma, which is a growing problem on the reservation. It can be aimed at getting students to stop smoking or discouraging them from starting. What does work - consistent, coordinated programs. Giving a student a brochure one day - which he will probably throw away. Having a guest speaker the next week, who the class might remember for a couple of days. Showing a video the week after that. Having a poster in your room about not smoking.