11 Minutes – anti-smoking campaign

The aim of the 11 Minutes project was to raise awareness of the statistic that every cigarette smoked shortens your life by 11 minutes.

Funded by a Healthy Communities Project Grant.

“Every cigarette you smoke takes 11 minutes off your life”

This statistic, published in the British Medical Journal1 prompted six final-year multi -disciplinary communication students to develop an on-campus campaign. They wanted to raise awareness about the smoking statistic and convince as many current smokers as possible to quit.

Their concept was simple: ask smokers on campus for one of their cigarettes and in return, give them 11 minutes of their life back. The smokers also received a Quit information card and a stick of chewing gum (proven to help some smokers quit).

The students collected 486 cigarettes from smokers on the City, Bundoora and Brunswick campuses. They mounted the cigarettes on a framed poster alongside a sheet of canvas on which smokers wrote about how they would spend their last 11 minutes.

The students made a video about the project:


  1. Shaw M, Mitchel R, Dorling D. Time for a smoke? One cigarette reduces your life by 11 minutes. 2000 January 1; 320(7226): 53.

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