What is Hidden In Plain Sight?

Healthiest Manitowoc County is happy to unveil our updated Hidden In Plain Sight display. Hidden In Plain Sight is used as a visual tool to educate parents on the current tobacco and substance environment their kids are in.

Why Backpacks and What’s in Them?

In the past, HMC has used a large bedroom display that took effort and time to put up and coordinate. After month’s of hard work by our Substance Abuse Prevention (SAP) coalition we introduce to the community a smaller, portable, and more relevant display; backpacks! These backpacks showcase possible products that teens can use to hide tobacco products that look like everyday items they should have, for example a soda can that opens on top and turns into a stashing container. It also displays some common vapes that parents should be able to recognize as they are made to look unassuming and similar to common school supply items. Lastly there is presentation and materials that accompany the bag to be used as a teaching tool for adults to identify possible red flags for unhealthy behaviors, learn how to talk to their teens about tobacco, alcohol, and other substance use, and some best practices and policies for educators in schools.

Who should Utilize the Backpacks?

These backpacks are intended to be used as an educational tool for educators and adults. These are not to show teens and build distrust. Rather, this should give adults and idea about the current tobacco climate because knowing what your children are facing allows you to better prepare to help them build up their resiliency skills. As part of the information, adults will be able to see how tobacco companies target youth by making their products appeal to them with crazy flavors of tobacco, like unicorn poop, design their products to be inviting and enticing, and feed the perception that vaping is safer than smoking. Understanding the messages teens are receiving is half the battle for educating them with facts, not marking schemes.

How to Request a Backpack or Presentation?

HMC does have a limited number of backpacks to give out to community partners. Our goal is to have every high school in the county have someone trained in how to utilize the backpack and train as they see fit. If you don’t know if your high school has required a bag already, please call and ask. HMC does have backpacks available to checkout for a events, one time use, etc. You will be required to sign the backpack out and return the backpack along with all products in the condition it was received. Depending on availability, HMC can also offer to do a parent or educator presentation with the backpacks. We would prefer that organizations do it themselves as they have more familiarity with the educators or adults they will be presenting too, but recognize that isn’t always an option.

Step 1– Set up your presentation time/date/location

Step 2– Fill out this request form and submit it to HMC

Step 3– HMC will connect with you to confirm details

Step 4– Receive backpack or confirmation of presentation from HMC

Step 5– Give presentation and accompanying survey to your target audience

Step 6– *Send survey results to healthiestmc@gmail.com subject line: Backpack Presentation Survey Results

Step 7– Work with HMC to return backpack if you are just checked one out for a one time use

*Grant money was used in order to fund this project. As part of our grant requirements, HMC needs the simple 3 question survey to be filled out at all educational sessions/demonstrations and sent to healthiestmc@gmail.com subject line: Backpack Presentation Survey Results


If you have any further questions regarding the Hidden In Plain Sight Backpacks, please call Cath Tease at 920-652-0238 or email healthiestmc@gmail.com