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The 13th World Conference on Tobacco OR Health

Building capacity for a tobacco-free world

July 12-15, 2006, Washington, DC, USA

Thursday, July 13, 2006 - 4:10 PM

Addressing Cultural Diversity in the 18-24 Year Old Population

Andrea E. Valdez, California Youth Advocacy Network, 4811 Chippendale Drive, Suite 300, Sacramento, CA 95841

Objective: There are over 3.5 million young adults in the state of California. Within this group of 18-24 year olds exist many different realities, cultural perspectives, and challenges. By acknowledging the strength of diversity within this population, tobacco control advocates can increase access to this important community and customize services and programs to better represent the specific needs of young adults. With this spirit, CYAN has worked to develop appropriate tools and resources to assist agencies in becoming more aware and inclusive of the diversity in the young adult population.

Methods: CYAN has been in the forefront of resource development and trainings to address the diversity in the young adult population. These tools give advocates throughout the state the opportunity to network, develop cultural awareness, and identify the challenges faced by young adults in local communities. Through resources and a statewide conference, agencies have been given the opportunity to exchange ideas about reaching individual populations of young adults and produce a stronger statewide coalition.

Results: With statewide participants representing diverse organizations, CYAN has raised the consciousness of advocates throughout state and facilitated agencies in the creation of individualized action plans for future young adult outreach. CYAN has been instrumental in increasing the skill set of advocates to work with a range of populations and cultures. As CYAN continues to provide tools ranging from teleconferences and fact sheets to trainings and conferences, the California tobacco control movement will continue to experience a shift to more culturally appropriate outreach and materials.

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