Editor's Note: These are the first two of four letters from a writing campaign engineered by the Northview High School Advanced Health Class.
To the Editor:
Every child has a hero or role model.
For most kids, it is a respected adult, such as a teacher, coach, parent or an older sibling.
They look up to, and are influenced by what they see their role models do.
Psychological studies at Oregon University have shown that a child will imitate a model's actions if the model possesses characteristics such as talent, intelligence, power, good looks, and/or popularity.
It is important that everyone as role models exhibit and project good behaviors and refrain from bad ones in the sight of young watchful eyes.
The Clay County Youth Football League (CYFL) is a wonderful program that promotes active and social lifestyles and teaches many important life skills to children in this area.
Among all the useful life skills this program teaches, we the Northview Advanced Health Class would like to partner with the CYFL and promote the healthy lifestyle of being tobacco-free.
We are willing to donate our time as well as "smoke-free campus" signs to be displayed at the CYFL grounds.
The children look up to their mentors, older friends and parents and what they are seeing is tobacco being openly used there. We, knowing the dangers of addiction and health risks in tobacco, do not want these aspiring athletes to become a new generation of tobacco addicts.
This letter is not for the purpose to condemn tobacco users but instead, to make them aware that they influence the children that are watching. We need to watch the habits we project in front of these vulnerable youth, and instead, help them instill the ideas that the Clay Football League environment strives for: Healthy children in body, mind, morals and the teaching of important life skills.
Northview High School, Advanced Health Class