News and Events

Levy County SWAT Member Facilitates Regional SWAT Meeting
March 2, 2013

Chiefland High School Senior and Statewide Students Working Against Tobacco (SWAT) Vice-Chair, Ansley Pentz, co-facilitated and planned the Region 2 SWAT Meeting, which took place on March 2, 2013.

The SWAT Youth Advocacy Board (YAB), which Ansley is a member of, planned the entire agenda for the regional meetings, which took place in each of the four regions of Florida at the same time in different locations. A total of 40 SWAT members attended the Region 2 meeting, including two other Levy SWAT members, Dakota Woodruff and Chyann Kendall. Dakota is an 8th grader at Chiefland High School and Chyann Kendall is a sophomore at Bronson High School.

SWAT YAB

The YAB members in each region facilitated the entire meeting for their peers, which focused on teaching and practicing the planning concept of “M.A.D. Skills,” which stands for “Message, Audience, and Delivery.” After learning the concept, the students participated in an activity which allowed them to practice their new skills through a mock event. The students separated into different groups and created a message about flavored tobacco. Then, they decided what audience they wanted to receive their message and created a booth to deliver the message in the setting of a fictional county fair or similar event.

Working Group

When asked what they thought about the regional meeting, Chyann Kendall said, “It was fun, but definitely a learning experience. The skills I learned helped out a lot with planning our Kick Butts Day video.” Dakota Woodruff also had a positive experience and said, “While I was at the regional SWAT meeting I had a great time doing activities, meeting new people, and learning more about how the tobacco companies try to suck us in.”

As a facilitator for the meeting, Ansley Pentz had a different perspective. She said, “The regional SWAT meeting was a great opportunity for members to meet others from their region. Throughout this training, YAB members had a chance to interact with kids who care about fighting Big Tobacco just as much as we do. I am proud to say that this was the best regional meeting ever. SWAT members not only learned how to create a successful event, they made one happen in two hours. These members are real leaders. They are what are going to get candy flavored tobacco resolutions passed in ever y county of Florida. All they needed was a small push in the form of this regional meeting. Now these amazing youth are unstoppable. I could not be more proud.”

SWAT