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Winners Have Been Chosen for the iPhone App Contest!

Keeping in line with this concept of being more interactive, we thought it would be great if we could create an iPhone application which would be free to download, and would remain true to YATI’s mission. Recently, we held a contest where we asked youth from across the province to design a concept for an iPhone application that would engage Ontarian youth in advocacy for healthier communities.

In third place was Alex Stinson, a Peer Leader from the Peterborough County-City Health Unit, who suggested a trivia game which would be “Who Wants to be a Millionaire-meets-Doctor Oz.” This game would present health facts from everyday situations in a simple yet engaging way.

Twenty year old Rachelia Giardino, another Peer Leader from the Peterborough County-City Health Unit, came in second place. Her suggested app would use keywords from users’ Facebook status updates to track their physical, mental and sexual health. It would also provide recommendations as well as local resources that would help users deal with issues and concerns regarding their health.

Finally, our first place winner is Samantha Hiebert, a twenty year old from Timmins, Ontario. She suggested a “Shout it Out” type of app where youth could discuss their opinions and thoughts about different issues. It’s an application meant to unify and inspire youth towards advocacy, and share ideas for change. We loved this idea and are hoping to take it one step further: we want an app where youth can submit videos of their ideas, thoughts and opinions on a different issue each month. Every month, youth can vote on a video they want featured from all the submissions. It would be a visual youth forum, and we think it has great potential!

As social media and different ways of communication are becoming the norm, we think this could be a new medium for youth to share ideas and interact to create change for healthier communities. Congratulations to all our winners! For more information about our top three finalists, see below:


Samantha Hiebert is a twenty year old from Timmins, Ontario. She is going into her third year of a registered nursing program, and has worked towards denormalizing tobacco use in youth and informing the public about tobacco products and the industry. Her Y.A.A (Youth Action Alliance) Whisper Out Loud advocated for the creation of a by-law for smoke-free parks and beaches in Timmins (which came into effect this year!). Samantha was an ambassador for the Smoke-Free Rides campaign (OLA) and has attended numerous YATI trainings. She is currently a volunteer for the Canadian Red Cross, the Canadian Blood Services as well as the Canadian Cancer Society. She hopes to pursue a career in tobacco management or emergency medicine.


Rachelia Giardino is a twenty year old Trent University student who is currently in her third year studying History and Women Studies. She has been a Peer Leader for four and a half years at the Peterborough County-City Health Unit, and loves advocating for youth and educating the public on health. She loves reading, scrapbooking, playing with her dog and hanging out with friends and her co-workers.


Alex Stinson is seventeen years old and resides in his home a little north of Peterborough. He is an eccentric character with a wild imagination that enjoys playing fetch with his dog Stella, and enjoys exploring the wilderness around his property. He attends school at PCVS and is in Grade 12. He aspires to be a teacher.

The overall economic cost due to tobacco use is almost $6.1 billion for Ontario and $17 billion for Canada.
(The Ontario Tobacco Research Unit, 2006)
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