Health Ed Pros was awarded $200,000 from the Indiana State Department of Health’s Tobacco Prevention and Cessation Commission for 2017-2019 to implement the Getting a Head Start on Living Tobacco Free program with Indiana Head Start programs.

Children who are exposed to secondhand smoke get sick more often, suffering from ear infections, asthma attacks, bronchitis, and pneumonia.  Sadly, more than 1,400 Hoosiers die from exposure to secondhand smoke each year.  Adults with lower income and education levels use tobacco at higher rates, which makes Head Start an ideal partner.

Head Start is the largest early childhood and family education program in the nation, offering comprehensive child development services to economically disadvantaged children and families with an emphasis on parental involvement.

The program focuses on educating Head Start staff and families about the harms of secondhand smoke and how to lessen exposure to secondhand smoke. Participants learn how secondhand smoke hurts, what secondhand smoke costs and how they can quit using tobacco.

Participating center receive free, hands-on training to help educate staff how tobacco use and secondhand smoke may impact the families they oversee, and the program is designed to help fulfill federal Head Start performance standards. Free educational materials are also available to promote living tobacco-free.

Parents may be unknowingly contributing to their child’s health problems, like asthma, by exposing them to secondhand smoke in their home or car.  Trained staff can help parents make the connection between their tobacco use and related health problems and encourage parents to maintain smoke-free home environments for children, and to create a tobacco-free lifestyle by quitting tobacco use.


Health Ed Pros is currently working with the following Head Start and
Early Head Start Agencies:

Carey Services (Grant County)

Community & Family Services (Blackford, Huntington, Wells, Adams, Jay, and Randolph Counties)

Community Care in Union County (Union County)

Kankakee-Iroquois Regional Planning Commission (Newton, Jasper, and Pulaski Counties)

More coming soon…


  • Presented to all Early Head Start Staff of Carey Services about health and economic impact of secondhand smoke and big tobacco marketing
  • Educated parents in Grant County about secondhand smoke at Fall Fest
  • Trained the Family Engagement Specialists with the Kankakee-Iroquois Regional Planning Commission on how to support parents who are ready to quit using tobacco
  • Recorded video trainings for Community & Family Services staff
  • Provided participating centers with sample social media posts to help spread the tobacco-free message
  • Collaborated with partner organizations including Smokefree Indy, Tobacco Free Indiana, Indiana Joint Asthma Coalition, Top 10, and Tobacco Free Hendricks County to support local tobacco control efforts.
  • Stay tuned for more exciting activities planned in 2018!!


  • Tobacco kills more than car accidents, aids, homicides, and alcohol combined, adding up to 480,000 deaths a year.
  • For every 8 smokers who die from using tobacco products, 1 non-smoker is killed by secondhand smoke.
  • Secondhand smoke contains 5,000 chemicals, 43 of which have been proven to cause cancer.
  • Tobacco smoke coats the surface of every space where a cigarette is smoked, when this is ingested by people this is called Third-Hand Smoke.
  • Over 900 low birth weight babies in Indiana are born as a result of secondhand smoke.
  • 1 in 5 Hoosier adults (21.1%) were current smokers in 2016.
  • Indiana has the 10th highest smoking prevalence in the US.
  • Smoking costs Hoosiers an estimated $2.93 billion  annually in health care costs.
  • Tobacco use is the leading preventable cause of premature death and disease in the US.
  • In 2016, 2.8% of middle school students and 10.5% of high school students reported current e-cigarette use.
  • E-cigarettes are the most commonly used tobacco product among Hoosier youth.
  • The U.S. Surgeon General has stated that e-cigarette aerosol is not harmless “water vapor”.
  • In 2016, 13.5% of pregnant women in Indiana smoked during their pregnancy.


Learn more about Indiana tobacco control efforts at

For help quitting tobacco call 1-800-Quit-Now or log on

To order FREE Quitline materials go to

American Cancer Society:

American Lung Association of Indiana:

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

CDC Tips from Former Smokers:

Indiana Campaign for Smokefree Air:

Legacy’s Truth Campaign:

National Campaign for Tobacco Free Kids:

Smoke Free Homes Project:

The Truth Initiative:

VOICE – Indiana Youth Speaking Out Against Big Tobacco:

World Health Organization – Tobacco Free Initiative:


Tanya S. Shelburne, MPH, CHES

Consultant/Project Manager


 Delyte Chester, CHES

Consultant/Project Coordinator


Contact us

Phone: 317-439-3781 or 317-443-6582

5868 E 71st Street #E-317, Indianapolis, IN 46220

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