The American Lung Association in West Virginia, in partnership with the West Virginia Department of Education and the West Virginia Division of Tobacco Prevention, have announced that Tygarts Valley Middle/High School in Mill Creek is the recipient of the Sue Niestroy-Wilson Award, a recognition of exemplary dedication and commitment to children in tobacco prevention and cessation. Tygarts Valley Middle/High School had the overall highest teen quit smoking rate using the Not On Tobacco (N-O-T) program of the American Lung Association.
The school will receive a $1,000 cash award and its N-O-T facilitator Joan Tacy will receive a $500 cash award. The award will be presented at the start of the school year.
The Sue Niestroy-Wilson Award is named for Sue Niestroy-Wilson, whose dedication to the children and families of West Virginia made her one of the first pioneers and leaders in tobacco prevention and cessation programs. Wilson's work earned her the respect, cooperation, and support of peers, parents and state and local officials.
Runner-ups for the Sue Niestroy-Wilson Award were given to schools and facilitators in each West Virginia educational region. These included Weir High School, Walda Elliott; Morgantown High School, Pam Berryman; Capon Bridget Middle School, Mary Ann Robinson; Scott High School, Kevin Graley; Marlinton Middle School, Jen Friel; and Harts Middle School, Robin Toney. Each school received a $250 cash award and its school facilitator received a $200 cash award.
The N-O-T program reached 333 students in the state of West Virginia. Ninety of those students quit smoking, using smokeless tobacco or both. Of those who could not quit, 83 percent reduced their tobacco use, favorably impacting their ability to quit later on their own. Tygarts Valley's Joan Tacy offered 11 sessions of the N-O-T program with support from school Principal Stephen Wamsley. Seventy students participated in the program; 41 of those students quit and 28 reduced their tobacco use.
The American Lung Association in West Virginia gave schools and organizations more than $28,000 to help implement the N-O-T program in their schools and communities. Seventy percent of teens in West Virginia continue to ask for help in stopping tobacco use, officials say..
For more information on the N-O-T teen quit smoking program, call Tony Richards at 800-LUNG-USA or email firstname.lastname@example.org.