Save the Children Philippines Joins World No Tobacco Day

"WE NEED FOOD, NOT TOBACCO!" Save the Children Philippines joins the global call to grow sustainable crops instead of tobacco during World No Tobacco Day. The switch will help alleviate the hunger of an estimated 404 million people including children worldwide.

Type: Story

 "WE NEED FOOD, NOT TOBACCO!" Save the Children Philippines joins the global call to grow sustainable crops instead of tobacco during World No Tobacco Day. The switch will help alleviate the hunger of an estimated 404 million people including children worldwide.

Tobacco use among Filipinos remains a significant public health challenge. Last year alone, the Lung Center of the Philippines recorded an alarming average of 321 deaths daily due to tobacco-related illnesses.

For Filipino children aged 13-15, Global Youth Tobacco Survey (2019) found that 12.5% of their respondents are using tobacco products. This sector is increasing with 14.1% of the youth sector puffing electronic cigarettes.

Meanwhile, users or not, 41.7% of children said they were exposed to secondhand smoke inside enclosed public spaces.

While the effects of smoking directly affect human health, specifically respiratory illnesses, it also aggravates food insecurity and hunger in vulnerable sectors of the country, particularly children who are most impacted by inequality and discrimination.

According to WHO data, the Philippines ranks 15th among the top 50 tobacco-growing countries in the world. More than 28,000 hectares of our local lands are tobacco plantations.

We appeal to the Department of Agriculture and to farmers to switch to more sustainable food crops and help support the food security and nutrition of about 2.7 million Filipino families who experienced hunger in 2023.

Until today, many Filipino children don't have access to quality health services or proper nutrition.

Save the Children Philippines has been working hard to protect the health, nutrition, and well-being of our children at all costs. We have been working with partners such as the Department of Health, the National Nutrition Council, local governments, partner organizations, communities, and families to ensure that no child is left behind.

We believe every child has the right to grow up healthy and strong. Learn more about how you can help children and their families by messaging supportercare.ph@savethechildren.org.

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Save the Children Philippines has been working hard every day to give Filipino children a healthy start in life, the opportunity to learn, and protection from harm. We do whatever it takes for and with children to positively transform their lives and the future we share.

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