Aylsham Football Club is to become a smoke free site thanks to a tie up with a county wide project which discourages smoking outdoors.
The Norfolk Smokefree Sidelines project aims to get people to keep their cigarettes away from football clubs, both inside and outside.
The theory is that children and young people who see adults using tobacco think that smoking is more common than it actually is. In addition smoking in front of children and young people can make them think that it is normal, acceptable or OK to smoke.
There is also the well known documented issue with second hand smoke.
Smokefree Sidelines is a voluntary scheme and has come about as a result of a collaboration between Norfolk County FA, Active Norfolk, Smoke Free Norfolk, Healthy Norwich at Norwich CCG, Norfolk County Council Public Health and Broadland District Council.
Gus Bates, youth section chairman at Aylsham, said: “The youth sides practice hard and are well coached and looked after at Aylsham.
“But we also want to make sure these young boys and girls can play their football in the healthiest environment possible – so having no smoking on our sidelines during training and games
or indeed anywhere else on the site, has clear and obvious benefits.
“We’re really pleased to be part of this scheme and I know other clubs in the county are doing the same.
“I’d encourage as many clubs as possible to find out more from the team at Norfolk FA.”
Aylsham will be a Broadland District Champion of the Smokefree Sidelines project and will advertise the scheme at its games using promotional flags and branded tee shirts.
The Chair of NHS Norwich CCG, Tracy Williams, said: “Children are influenced by what they see, they copy what adults do and young people are most at risk of becoming smokers themselves if they grow up in communities where smoking is the norm.
“The most effective way to prevent young people from becoming smokers is to encourage adult smokers to quit and to remove young people’s exposure to smoking.”
Words courtesy of Just Regional.