News and Events

Highlands County Students Working Against Tobacco (SWAT) Members Attend Regional Training
December 5, 2018

Hurricane Michael may have cancelled the originally scheduled Regional 3 SWAT meeting, but it didn’t dampen spirits during the make-up meeting held on November 10, 2018 in Kissimmee, Florida. Maria Ramos and Maritza Palacios, two of our sophomores from Lake Placid High School, attended to represent the SWAT Chapter of Highlands County. The morning was kicked off with interactive icebreaker activities to introduce themselves to other region 3 SWAT members and to get to know them for the remaining of the day filled with group activities.

Photovoice was one of the main topics of the day, which is an excellent tool to use when there is a need to create awareness around a certain issue or concern. The YAB members gave examples of tobacco issues in our communities and showed how Photovoice is an effective tool to raise awareness and to reach state and local policymakers with solutions. In addition, the Not a Lab Rat Campaign was also a huge part of the YAB presentation that included the history and marketing of ENDS, as well as a SWAT call to action. Amendment 9, the FDA cracking down on vaping and lobbying vs. advocating were just a few other topics heard and overall SWAT youth seemed to really enjoy their day!      

“The Regional SWAT Training is always something to look forward to and this year didn’t disappoint! Maria and Maritza talked the whole way home about the day and look forward to bringing all the information learned back to the SWAT Chapter of Highlands County,” said Amanda John, Community Health Advocate in Highlands County.

If you are interested in joining the SWAT/PAC Club in Highlands County, we have clubs at Avon Park High School, Avon Park Middle School, Hill Gustat Middle School, Lake Placid High School, Lake Placid Middle School, Sebring High School and Sebring Middle School. Please contact Amanda John at for more information on how to join.