In an attempt to better address health issues affecting school-aged children, the Georgetown municipality has commenced a Schools Environmental Health Education campaign to target primary level schools across the capital city.

The main aim of this exercise is to engage the pupils at the primary level on important health issues that have the potential of impacting the city. This development comes on the heels of recent reports out of the Caribbean Public Health Agency of an outbreak of dengue in Jamaica which had raised concerns for other Caribbean countries. CARPHA had, moreover, made it clear that it is important that Caribbean countries employ preventative measures to prevent mosquito breeding sites.

The implementation of education programmes at the level of the school and community were cited as essential tactics for the control of the disease. This educational programme, according to information released by the municipality, provides an understanding of the mechanism of infection and the key behavioural changes that should be used to prevent transmission of the disease.

The involvement of schools has been recognised as an important medium since the information can be taken to the home and wider community. Moreover, the school based programme is expected to allow for the transfer of information from the pupils to others within the community. In addition it is expected that the campaign activities will include the elimination of actual and potential breeding places of Aedes Aegypti mosquitoes which transmits dengue.

The school education programme targets the students between the ages of nine and 11 years old. The programme sensitises children about the dangers of dengue fever, its mode of transmission, breeding places of the mosquito, signs and symptoms of the disease, and measures to alleviate transmission. The fundamental approach of this undertaking includes the fostering of a change in attitudes towards the environment.

The programme is being implemented through the municipality’s Public Health Department in collaboration with the Ministry of Education’s Public Relations Division. It targets all the primary school in the City of Georgetown and to date pupils of Agricola, West Ruimveldt, Stella Maris, North Georgetown, St. Margaret’s, St Ambrose, J.E. Burnham, F.E. Pollard, St Pius, and Smith Memorial Primary Schools have been reached. This health and environmental education programme is also slated to eventually target community groups.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here