Hibiscus Foundation for Social Welfare (HFSW)is a youth-run and youth-led non-profit organisation that works actively towards creating a lasting impact via helping young adolescents bring change in society. The foundation aims to foster awareness and empower adolescents against various industrial tactics and other influences used by tobacco industries that provoke the youth to buy their products. This boost in awareness can be evidently seen through the ‘World No Tobacco Day’ (WNTD) Workshop conducted by the foundation for over 6000+ students from diverse socio-economic backgrounds (and in different vernaculars)at various schools with a 78% turn rate. These workshops exposed the industrial tactics of tobacco companies and explained ways to protect students from manipulative marketing tactics. HFSW received exceptional responses from the students as well. Hibiscus Foundation aims to cover additional 10,000 students through these workshops by the end of March 2021; the primary purpose is to make the youth a tobacco-free generation.
Students from different schools who participated in the workshop actively interacted with the facilitators about their experiences on how tobacco harmed the people they knew personally. The workshop inspired them to back up their arguments with scientific knowledge when trying to spread awareness in close circles about the ill-effects of tobacco. Not only did the use of vernacular language during the course of the workshop encourage the students to openly voice their opinions, it also emboldened them to speak up against various industry tactics aimed at the young generation.
To aid this process, HFSW provides pro-bono counselling services for all those who aim to quit tobacco. This is an active and ongoing project that has currently covered more than 200 people and gives necessary tools to the interested participants to help them quit their addiction.
In addition to this, the "Stress-Free Friday'' project by HFSW offers free guided imagery sessions for all age groups. Having seen over200 participants, this project was partnered with the WNTD team to provide free guided imagery and meditation sessions. Through alternative methods, these sessions can help relieve stress to those who smoke, instead of giving in to smoking.
To reach out to more people and cover more ground, HFSW has partnered with the Question Cloud. This collaboration aims at spreading awareness among their users by creating an interactive ‘No Tobacco Quiz’. This quiz of over 200 participants contains information from the fact sheet and other key messages in a creative, interesting manner which caters to a student-based audience in schools and colleges across the world.
As an addition to the fun and creative elements, HFSW has partnered with an up-and-coming rapper to create a "No tobacco” rap song (of over 1000+ views) to spread awareness about the harmful effects of tobacco. A "No-Tobacco Quiz filter” was also created for Instagram to further spread awareness on this topic. In addition to this, they conducted an addiction awareness webinar with rehabilitation centers. Along with this, Hibiscus is in the process of creating a social game night that is in accordance with the previous game nights, but coupled with the theme of "No Tobacco”. Game nights are conducted in a fun and interesting manner with various levels, providing opportunities for each participant to address key facts on the use of tobacco.
HFSW has impacted around 10,000 people over a period of 6 months through our awareness workshops. The Foundation’s social media campaigns have reached over 371,400+ people and has successfully spread awareness on anti-tobacco, mental health, Persons with Disabilities and other health (and health- rights related) aspects.