Children must be in good physical and emotional health to learn. Yet in developing countries, the most vulnerable children are more affected by infectious diseases.
These frequent illnesses are a cause of school absenteeism. They reduce a child’s ability to concentrate and participate in class, thus lowering his overall level of learning.
According to the World Health Organization in the 1st article of its 1946 constitution, “Health is a state of complete physical, mental and social well-being and not just the absence of disease or infirmity”.
This definition takes into account the environmental, social, psychological, and physical context in which the youngest life, around the promotion, education, and prevention of access to health.
Numerous studies have demonstrated the close links between education and health: nutritional deficiencies, infections, and diseases have serious consequences on children’s participation and learning in school. Likewise, unwanted or early pregnancies undermine the participation of students and teachers in education and interfere with learning processes.
Clarita Martinet Fay, USED Director: “If we are to keep our commitment to access to quality education for all children and adolescents, then improving their health through simple interventions must be an integral part of every AED program. “
In every program supported by USED, we strive to offer a holistic education where health is a key element.
Burkina Faso –
Teenage pregnancies are one of the most important obstacles to the pursuit of education for adolescent girls and young women and prevention is a priority for the Burkinabè state.
Our partner Cherenfant, in collaboration with local health authorities, conducted awareness campaigns for the prevention of teenage pregnancies in schools and communities in the Cascades region. These activities aroused great interest from communities, young people, and their parents and increased attendance at Health and Social Promotion Centers.
La Saisonnière trains young people between the ages of 16 and 18 in agroecology, organic horticulture, and table-top micro-gardening in urban areas in Ouagadougou. This training allows young people and their families to grow healthy and varied foods and to have a balanced diet.
Our partner the Life for All Foundation works in the fields of education and health. Health centers are set up near schools so that children and adolescents, especially those living in the Kandi boarding school, can have access to care, thus enabling them to study better.
Health education is an important tool for empowering young people – mainly women – and communities that improve their health and ensure sustainable development.
Health and education are therefore closely linked and together constitute the foundation on which the dynamics of success are based: education contributes to maintaining health and health provides the conditions necessary for learning.