Keeping Our Lungs Safe (KOLS)


Our Keeping Our Lungs Safe (KOLS) program is a collaborative project funded by the California Department of Public Health: California Tobacco Control Project (CTCP) working to eliminate health disparities related to tobacco and tobacco smoke in Los Angeles County. We primarily serve the cities of Inglewood, Gardena, Hawthorne, Carson, Compton, Lancaster, and Palmdale. KOLS is working to enhance the quality of life in these areas by:

  • Educating community members about the social injustice surrounding tobacco, especially in African-American communities
  • Training youth/young adults to be advocates for their peers in the wake of the vaping epidemic
  • Promoting smoke-free apartments, condominiums, churches, masjids, and other places of worship
  • Providing support and resources for those trying to quit smoking



KOLS ( Keeping Our Lungs Safe) is a project funded by the California Tobacco Control Program that aims to reduce  tobacco-related health disparities among the African/Black communities. Our goal is to promote health equity through community education and policy change.

KOLS engages concerned community members in activities to facilitate the implementation of smoke-free  faith-based campuses, educating our youth about the dangers of smoking and smoke-free multi-unit housing. Additionally, KOLS seeks to inform our elected officials about flavored tobacco products.


WE Help With


Multi Unit Housing

KOLS partners with multi-unity housing property owners, managers and tenants in the cities of Inglewood and Downey to provide information about the dangers of secondhand smoke.  Secondhand smoke is the smoke from the burning end of a cigarette, pipe or cigar as well as the smoke exhaled by a smoker. KOLS provides resources for individuals looking to protect their health and their properties by becoming smoke-free.  The efforts of the KOLS project is to support by educating and informing the community including property owners and local elected officials. By educating community members and elected officials, KOLS supports the initiative to designate 100% of apartments and condominiums in Inglewood and Downey as smoke-free.

Youth Coalition

KOLS facilitates youth ages 13-24 to engage with the community on tobacco related health disparity issues.  The KOLS youth coalition volunteers are trained to effectively educate the community about tobacco control issues. In addition they serve as community leaders by advocating for stronger tobacco control policies. KOLS youth coalitions consist of youth from the cities of Hawthorne, Gardena, Carson, Inglewood, Palmdale and Lancaster.

Faith Based Organizations

KOLS partners with African/Black faith based organizations in an effort to inform this group on health disparities and social injustices associated with tobacco products and the tobacco industry. In partnership with the youth coalition, KOLS hosts seminars, workshops, and information booths at faith-based community events in Inglewood, Gardena, Carson, Compton, Hawthorne, Lancaster, and Palmdale.  


Tobacco Retail License

KOLS works to support stronger tobacco retail license ordinances in the cities of Carson, Hawthorne, Palmdale, and Lancaster. Youth coalition members spearhead these efforts by educating their peers on the enticing marketing tactics Big Tobacco utilizes to attract young consumers. By collecting data such as public opinion polls and retail outlet observations, KOLS aims to inform decision makers who are considering amending the tobacco sale laws in their jurisdictions.

The Story of Inequity

The Story of African American/Black

Tobacco is immensely destructive in African American/Black communities, causing more deaths than AIDS, accidents, and homicide combined. (1) Tobacco companies’ manipulative tactics have led to African American/Black communities experiencing the greatest burden of tobacco-related mortality of any racial or ethnic group in the United States. (2) Read more here.


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