An Intergeneration Workshop Program targeting older adults on
how to promote smoking prevention with their grandchildren.

(including electronic cigarettes and hookah use)

The consequences of the onset of cigarette smoking in childhood have been well documented.  Tobacco use, especially electronic cigarettes and hookah smoking, currently on the rise among tweens and adolescents, is a major concern to our nation’s public health experts.


Recognizing the importance of grandparents as principal care providers of children in many families and the key role they play in helping children make decisions, this workshop program series will address how grandparents can serve as role models and key influencers for their grandchildren in their decision to smoke or not.


An innovative model and new approach for smoking prevention activities and programs that schools and communities can use to stem the tide of adolescent smoking will be developed and pilot tested in New York City with a cohort of adults who have grandchildren.


This new program, under the direction of Healthy Children Healthy Futures (HCHF), and supported through a grant from Strang Cancer Prevention Institute, will determine whether grandparents can serve as role models and key influencers for their grandchildren in their decision to smoke or not.  The program will be developed in two phases.


Phase I:  Focus Group Testing:


The first step was to conduct a focus group in NYC with a group of grandparents who have grandchildren, ages 11-15.  This discussion ( done pre-Covid19)  helped us learn if grandparents knew  ways to inhibit the onset of smoking among their grandchildren.  It also helped to determine if grandparents believe they have role modeling influence over their grandchildren’s health decision making when it comes to various types of smoking.


An additional focus group was conducted with young people; ages 11-15 who have grandparents living close by to them.  This focus group  helped us to understand what young teens think about tobacco use,electronic cigarettes and hookah pipe smoking, and if they believe that their grandparents have influence on their decision making.  


Educational Intervention:


Based on focus group analysis, content will be developed in Phase II for three sequential grandparent webinars.  Each one will be designed with knowledge and behavior-based activities targeted to grandparents and their interaction with their grandchildren.  A coaching process using text messaging, e-mails, or phone calls will be added to provide reinforcement of webinar content for grandparents.


Phase II: Pilot Testing of Intervention


Phase II will include the development of the webinars and how to encourage grandparents to view the webinars, the recruitment of participating grandparents, and determination of program incentives. The coaching process with a script for text messaging, emails and phone calls will be developed.   A pre and post webinar survey will be administered on-line to the grandparents along with a pre-post survey targeted to grandchildren.  Outcomes will be evaluated.


For more information on this current HCHF effort, please contact Dr. Woodie Kessel at  or