A SOUTH Tyneside school is highlighting the health and wealth benefits of giving up smoking.
Pupils at Westoe Crown Primary in Sea Winnings Way, Westoe Crown Village, South Shields, have been taking part in activities in the run-up to No Smoking Day today.
A special assembly was held on Ash Wednesday as part of the school’s litter week and the Swap Fags For Swag campaign.
School governor Linda Jones, who works for the NHS, came in dressed as ‘Big Cig’ and spoke to children in Years 4, 5 and 6.
Headteacher Steve Price said: “The aim was to get the children to encourage the adults in their lives not only to think about the health benefits of giving up smoking, but the financial benefits.
“‘Big Cig’ came in and explained that cigarettes cost a lot of money, and the children were staggered that in one week an average smoker will spend £49 on cigarettes.
“The children were encouraged to think about what you could spend £49 on, such as a family trip to the cinema or a day out.
“They were also asked to design a poster as part of the Swap Fags For Swag campaign, and they went home full of enthusiasm and came back with loads.”
Swap Fags For Swag is the theme of this year’s No Smoking Day, run by the British Heart Foundation (BHF). The charity’s annual health awareness campaign, now in its 30th year, has helped 1.5m smokers quit for good since 1984.
Money matters often prick the conscience of smokers, with a BHF survey showing just over a third feel guilty about the amount they spend on cigarettes.