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Grandmother is Inspiration for Winner of Tobacco Free Florida YouCare Contest

Top 25 Videos Airing on Exclusive Statewide On-Demand Channel

TALLAHASSEE, Fla., June 30 /PRNewswire/ -- Tobacco Free Florida today announced the winner of the YouCare video contest. Rachel Sbrissa from Clearwater was selected out of 150 entries for her video that shares why she chooses not to smoke. Sbrissa's grandmother, her inspiration for the entry, was undergoing chemotherapy and radiation for lung cancer when the video was being created, but sadly lost the battle a few weeks ago.

Donna Aftuck, Marketing Coordinator for the Florida Department of Health served as one of the judges for the contest. "I was impressed by the creativity of the videos that were submitted and the passion that many youth in Florida feel against tobacco use. The winning video touched on all the important reasons why Floridians shouldn't smoke while showing how relevant tobacco prevention is to the lives of youth today."

Sbrissa's submission (along with the top 25 video entries) will be shown on the first ever statewide On-Demand channel devoted exclusively to the campaign, reaching more than two million subscribers to Comcast and Bright House Networks Digital Cable. The nine winners are: David Warren of Lakeland, Christopher W. Jones of Orlando, Somon Nader of Boca Raton, Nicki Ricci of Santa Rosa Beach, Jonathan Evan Stio of North Miami Beach, Chris Aitken of Miami, James Daly of Oviedo, Joseph Rodriguez of West Palm Beach, and Matthew David of Jacksonville.

Stick figures illustrate the reasons why Sbrissa does not smoke including second-hand smoke that smells and pollutes the air, yellow teeth and fingers, bad breath and lung cancer. She also regards smoking as a waste of time and money and concludes her video by saying we only get one life and she wants to live a long, fulfilled one.

Floridians were invited to create and submit videos that show their unique point of view about not smoking and the relationship of that point of view to the contest title "YouCare." Tobacco Free Florida partnered with YouTube to sponsor the YouCare video contest where entrants share why they don't smoke. The contest allowed users to vote for their favorite submission and then the top 50 videos were reviewed by a judging panel to determine the grand prize winner and runner-ups. In scoring, judges considered originality, entertainment value and the creative way in which the video showed the relationship to smoking and the theme, YouCare. To view the winning videos, visit

SOURCE Tobacco Free Florida
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