News and Events

Students Working Against Tobacco (SWAT) Recruitment Begins in DeSoto County for the 2016-2017 School Year 
August 1, 2016

School is back in session and the DeSoto County SWAT Club recruitment is in full swing! DeSoto County currently has 3 SWAT Clubs, with chapters at DeSoto Middle School, DeSoto High School, and a community based club at Casa San Juan Bosco in Arcadia. In addition to being present at numerous community wide events and open house(s), the start of the school year means each of the clubs, as well as members of the Tobacco Free Partnership, are exhibiting strong efforts in hopes to recruitment more active SWAT members to help spread the word about tobacco prevention.

One of the most important messages the Clubs work hard to spread to their peer groups is that using tobacco products is NOT a social norm. In fact, according to the most recent Florida Youth Tobacco Survey (FYTS), 16.9% of school youth in DeSoto County reported using some form of tobacco within the last 30 days. This sits at an astounding 7% above the state average of 9.2%.

The SWAT Clubs work on many projects throughout the year, from speaking at local legislative meetings about tobacco issues to running campus-wide activities for observances like Kick Butts Day and the Great American Smoke Out.

SWAT Club participation helps students earn community service hours, gain experience for college applications and resumes, and hone their public speaking and leadership skills. Students are also given the opportunity to attend regional trainings. At these trainings students are able to collaborate with peers throughout the state, attend sessions on leadership skills, and learn more about emerging tobacco issues, like point of sale marketing and e-cigarettes.

To learn more or to get involved with a local SWAT Club, contact DeSoto County SWAT Coordinator, Jodie DeLoach at