2019-2022

Keeping students healthy

© Healthy Learners

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2019-2022

Healthy learners

Healthy Learners is committed to improving the health of children over five years old through a school-based community health programme. It trains teachers as community health workers and links schools with the healthcare system. Working in Zambia, Healthy Learners has trained over 800 school health teachers. These teachers currently serve 250,000 primary school students in Lusaka and the Copperbelt provinces. Zambia will serve as a model of how governments throughout the region can improve the health of school-age children.

CHALLENGE

In Zambia 40% of school-age children suffer from preventable and treatable diseases like malaria, respiratory infections, worm infestations or diarrhoea. These conditions impact their physical, cognitive and emotional development, resulting in poor educational performance, school absenteeism and early dropout.

© Cartier Philanthropy / Andrea Borgarello

ACTION

Healthy Learners trains and equips teachers to become school health workers. These teachers monitor students’ health, assess children who are unwell, treat mild conditions and refer children with more serious issues, as well as girls in need of sexual and reproductive care, to health facilities. This ensures that sick children are identified and treated quickly, reducing the duration of their absence from school.

Healthy Learners also works with school administrators and local government to establish health rooms at schools, where students who are not feeling well can be assessed by school health workers.

Healthy Learners is working with the Zambian government’s Ministries of Health and Education to scale this model as a national school health programme.

IMPACT

The Healthy Learners programme has shown to have a significant impact on children’s health. It achieves this by improving students’ knowledge of health topics and their access to and utilisation of healthcare, ultimately reducing the burden of disease.

38
%

Reduction in student morbidity

48
%

Increase in vitamin A levels

and deworming coverage

22
%

INCREASE IN STUDENTS HEALTH KNOWLEDGE

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© Healthy Learners

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© Healthy Learners

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© Healthy Learners

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© Healthy Learners

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© Healthy Learners

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© Healthy Learners

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© Healthy Learners

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© Healthy Learners