Ontario Students Quit for Cash on 'Weedless Wednesday'

University & College students quit for good

TORONTO, Jan. 14 /CNW/ - 'Weedless Wednesday', January 20th, 2010, will mark day one of Leave The Pack Behind's provincial wouldurather... contest. Designed to motivate and encourage young adults to quit smoking, the contest will challenge students across 51 Ontario university and college campuses to quit or reduce smoking, and stay smoke free with the help of a "buddy", peer-to-peer support, motivating support emails and prizes.

"More young adults than teens or older adults use tobacco; finding ways to help young adult smokers quit smoking is important," says Heather Travis, Assistant Manager of Research for Leave The Pack Behind. "The odds of quitting are five times higher for smokers who enter quit-and-win contests compared to those who go it alone. The wouldurather... contest is particularly effective for young adults because it is designed for this age group - not their parents."

"The wouldurather... contest supports the goal of reducing the prevalence of smoking among Ontario students. Working with students, campus health professionals and campus administration, Leave The Pack Behind provides students with support to successfully quit smoking and reduce their risk for future disease," says Dr. Kelli-an Lawrance, Associate Professor, Department of Community Health Sciences at Brock University.

Kick-off of the wouldurather... contest occurs during National Non-Smoking Week running January 17-23, 2010. Throughout the week, Leave The Pack Behind's student-teams will host a variety of events at Ontario post-secondary institutions, heath professionals in campus health centres will distribute free Quit Kits and samples of quit aids, and students will be invited to register for the contest online or in person on their campus until January 19.

Funded by the Ministry of Health Promotion as part of the Smoke-Free Ontario Strategy, Leave The Pack Behind is a comprehensive, age-tailored tobacco control initiative for young adults on post-secondary campuses in Ontario.

Leave The Pack Behind's tobacco control programming is available to 544,000 students across the province - including an estimated 140,000 smokers. Leave The Pack Behind offers students effective smoking cessation support throughout the school year.

SOURCE Leave The Pack Behind

For further information: For further information: Lindsay Taylor, Assistant Manager of Leave The Pack Behind, at (905) 688-5550, ext. 5838, cell: (416) 873-0372, e-mail: ltaylor2@brocku.ca or LTPB at (905) 688-5550 ext. 5144

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