Tobacco Cessation Boot Camp

Project Overview:

Healthy Aroostook, a program of Aroostook County Action Program and Healthy Maine Partnership, is proposing to pilot a Tobacco Cessation Boot Camp. A boot camp, in which the “whole” person is supported throughout a three day weekend, will increase the chance for participants to successfully quit smoking. The goal will be to have 75% of participants smoke-free after six months.

The Tobacco Boot Camp will use individual and group counseling, medication, physical activity and healthy eating strategies. Using multiple strategies increases the chances of a quit attempt being successful. We believe combining a boot camp with regular follow-up, including the buddy system, tobacco help-line, and other check-in points (after the camp is over) will further increase the chance for success.

The Challenge:

The toll of smoking is staggering: one-third of all smokers die prematurely; 440,000 deaths annually in the US. Health Care costs are in excess of $75 billion/year. (From:

According to the American Heart Association, cigarette smoking is the single most preventable cause of disease and death in the United States. Smoking is a major risk factor for heart disease, stroke, lung cancer, and chronic lung diseases-all leading causes of death. Exposure to secondhand smoke also has serious health effects. Asthma and other respiratory conditions often are triggered or worsened by tobacco smoke.

Referring to the Tobacco Cessation Works: An Overview of Best Practices and State Experiences (October 11, 2010/Ann Boonn), the National Commission on Prevention Priorities found that use of tobacco cessation counseling services remains low and estimates that 42,000 lives would be saved each year if utilization of recommended cessation services increased to 90 percent.

Project Benefits:

Short-term impact: The pilot program will be successful and 75% of participants will be tobacco free after six months. The program will become an annual event in Aroostook County, impacting hundreds of lives each year. Specifically, if 50 smokers participate annually, 38 will be smoke-free after six months. Not only will the smokers receive the health and financial benefits of quitting, so will their family members, friends, co-workers and employers.

Long-term impact: If the pilot program is successful it will become an annual event in Aroostook County. In addition, the program will be readily shared with other organizations in Maine and nationally. Based on the short-term success goals, if the program is replicated by just five other organizations, it can impact thousands of lives each year!

Aroostook County Community Action Program
Grant Amount Given: 
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Types of Cancer: 

Maine Cancer Foundation Grants to this Organization:

Year Program Amount Category Organization
2015 Tobacco Cessation Boot Camp $36,190 Prevention Aroostook County Community Action Program
2013 Healthy Aroostook: Breast and Cervical Cancer Awareness Program $26,762 Education Aroostook County Community Action Program