The under the theme- "Laying the foundation for good health & wellness one student at a time," the Adolescent Health Unit- Ministry of Health Guyana continues with the establishment of new School Health Clubs in Guyana; PAHO and UNICEF Guyana are committed to supporting the initiative.
To jump-start the year, on January 16th, 2023, a team of officials traveled to Mabaruma, sub- district in region one (1), where they spent one week with students of teachers of; Northwest Secondary, Wauna Primary Top, White-Water Primary, Kamwatta Primary, Hosororo Primary, and Yarakita Primary schools, conducting SRH training and school health training. The students and teachers gathered at the regional boardroom in central Mabaruma were exposed to five (5) full days of training. These included presentations, group discussions, role-playing, and evaluations on various health topics conducted by members of the PAHO, UNICEF and MOH team. The training was conducted in several sessions separated by breaks and numerous recap activities to ensure all 30 participants grasped the concepts presented.
The purpose of these sessions is to educate students on the quality of health education among adolescents and access to health services across Guyana. Students showed an interest in learning more about the school health program, environmental health, adolescent sexual reproductive health and understanding sexuality, mental health, drug, alcohol awareness and prevention, nutrition, and exercise, to mention a few.
The packed five (5) days of activities aimed to keep participants informed and introduce new solutions to current and future crises. It was clearly outlined that there is much work to be done after the five (5) days of training.
Over the years, the Adolescent Health Unit School Health Program has received support from PAHO/WHO Guyana office, UNICEF, UNFPA, and GLOBAL FUND in supporting the initiative that promotes health and well-being among the adolescent in the school population. The establishment of these clubs is not enough to achieve the main goal of the PAHO/Global Affairs Canada Project 2022-2024. Hence there is a need for a more focus that will promote the establishment, development, and sustainability of the program through supporting capacity building, and provision of IEC materials and models along with other technical corporations that will aid in the development and sustainability of the school health clubs in school within the ten administrative regions.