News and Events

The DeSoto County Students Working Against Tobacco (SWAT) Chapter is Gearing Up for the 2022-2023 School Year!
September 19, 2022

SWAT (Students Working Against Tobacco) is Florida’s statewide youth organization working to mobilize, educate and equip Florida youth to revolt against and de-glamorize Big Tobacco. SWAT is a united movement of empowered youth working towards a tobacco free future.

Our DeSoto SWAT kicked the 2022-23 school year off with a back-to-school drive for the community. Where we were able to contribute school supplies to our district while educating on the rising trend of tobacco and vaping in our youth. Also, our SWAT youth participated in an Open House recruitment booth at the High School. During open house they were able to recruit 15 new members for the SWAT chapter. We are beyond proud that our numbers are continuing to rise in our local SWAT chapter. Desoto High School SWAT members also participated in a Health Fair where they educated on tobacco and vape use in our youth.

We are continuing to work with the DeSoto County School Board to implement a stronger tobacco free policy within our school district. Our SWAT Youth have been present over the summer educating board members on recent data, trends they see in schools, and briefly sharing on the recent updates available to the board via NEOLA, an organization our district is partnered with who provides board policies that secure the quality of teaching and learning and provide direction to enhance the school environment. The suggested NEOLA policy would close the gaps in current policy and create a comprehensive tobacco free environment for DeSoto County Schools.

Another big initiative that our SWAT youth have been working on is promoting our free tobacco education courses. The courses are provided through Palm Beach County and are free of charge to us. The goal of these courses is to educate those students on what is in tobacco and how harmful it is to their bodies and future. DeSoto Middle School has had great success in the course and Desoto High School is now on board with using the course as well. The course will be used as an alternative to out-of-school suspension when a student is found with any kind of tobacco or vaping product in their possession.

We are very proud of our youth and the initiative they are putting forth to advocate for their health and a tobacco free future in DeSoto County. Quarter one was a huge success, and we look forward to what the new school year has in store.

If you are interested in partnering with our SWAT Youth or if any event arises that we can help with, please contact Lindsey Sager at