Lafayette public housing resident Leisha Carter began smoking at age 19, and it wasn’t until a visit to her cardiologist 37 years later that she quit for good. Leisha’s doctor connected her to the Smoking Cessation Trust, a smoking cessation program that beneﬁts Louisiana residents who began smoking before Sept. 1, 1988 and desire to quit.
While Leisha admits it was hard to quit in the beginning, she credits her family with providing encouragement. “I had help from my husband, and he made sure we didn’t have cigarettes. A lot of my family did support me, because they don’t smoke, and they’d pray that I’d stop,” she said.
Leisha’s journey to quit smoking began around the same time the Lafayette Housing Authority chose to implement the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s nationwide smoke-free in public housing rule.
Leisha serves as president of the Lafayette Housing Authority’s Resident Council and has words of encouragement for her neighbors and others who want to give up smoking or other forms of tobacco.
“Some of the residents quit on their own, oﬀ and on; some like to quit on a Monday to see how far they go but get back to smoking. But when you get oﬀ the wagon, just keep going and start all over again,” she said.
“Quitting smoking helped me become healthier, and I’ve noticed the diﬀerence in my blood pressure. I have also been taken oﬀ medications and feel great,” said Leisha.