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Media sensitization programme on adverse effects of tobacco abuse held in Naharkatia

Assam Cancer Care Foundation (ACCF), a Government of Assam and Tata Trusts initiative, joined hands with the District Tobacco Control Cell to organize a media sensitization awareness programme in Naharkatia MV School on Thursday.

Media sensitization

Sentinel Digital Desk

A Correspondent

NAHARKATIA: Assam Cancer Care Foundation (ACCF), a Government of Assam and Tata Trusts initiative, joined hands with the District Tobacco Control Cell to organize a media sensitization awareness programme in Naharkatia MV School on Thursday.

This meeting was held with the effort of local youth Hiten Sonowal, the data entry operator of Assam Cancer Care Foundation. District Health Manager Nidhi Das and Health Care Manager Abhijit Bhattacharya spoke about the adverse effects of tobacco abuse on the society. Nidhi Das, the District Health Manager of ACCF, said that Assam Cancer Care Foundation (ACCF) had been working with multiple stakeholders to sensitize and create awareness on the adverse effects of tobacco abuse.

Tobacco is the single largest cause of preventable deaths and illness worldwide and it kills half of its users prematurely and it is the major risk factor for cancer, cardiovascular disease (CVD) and diabetes. To reduce the burden of tobacco-related diseases, ACCF along with District Tobacco Control Cell (DTCC), Dibrugarh is actively working in implementation of the Cigarettes and Other Tobacco Products Act 2003-COTPA and also implementation of Tobacco Free Education Institution (ToFEI) guidelines in schools while ensuring active youth engagement and partnership with like-minded local organizations. Nidhi Das said, "Media personnel are the main key factors to create awareness among the people against cancer."

Healthcare manager of Assam Cancer Care Foundation, Dibrugarh, Abhijit Bhattacharya said, "As part of youth prevention programme, ACCF team has been supporting the district authorities with mapping, planning, BCC and other aspects to target the youth in educational institutions to encourage right behavior against tobacco abuse. ACCF, in coordination with DTCC and the Department of Education, is working in implementing the ToFEI guidelines in eight districts of Assam - Darrang, Barpeta, Kamrup rural, Jorhat, Nagaon, Dibrugarh, Karbi Anglong and Cachar. This will help in setting up of institutional mechanisms and facilitate implementation of the guidelines along with regular monitoring and review. ACCF is also encouraging partnership with civil societies to undertake assessment of implementation status of these guidelines and assist the institutions in removing gaps or mobilize support from the local institutions whenever necessary. ACCF and DTCC has already trained the Cluster Resource Centre Co-ordinator (CRCC) in every district so that they can disseminate the knowledge at school level. Secondary schools are also being targeted in all the eight districts where sensitization programmes are being conducted."

"The head teachers are trained on ToFEI and are advised to appoint a nodal teacher for ToFEI guidelines monitoring. In the last three months, ACCF conducted over 50 virtual and physical trainings engaging over 2,500 beneficiaries. We will focus on conducting more robust tobacco control programmes in the rural communities by involving community-based organizations and youth groups along with media engagements," Bhattacharya added.

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