Development Partners Implement The Community School Health Education Approach

There are many development partners who invest to develop the rural community project implementation in Southeast Asia region which based on different approaches like in Cambodia. For instance one of other development partners (Non-governmental organization) in Cambodia who helped the government both technically and funding through producing the manual for school and community of a “Fit for School Program “ which emphasizes on the program activity implementation of school hygiene and sanitation education approach. This program consists of three main objectives including hand washing, tooth brushing and deworming for school children. This NGO works to collaborate with the Cambodian Ministry of Education, Youth and Sport, Ministry of Health and Ministry of Interior.

Collaboration manner between the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports, representatives of the Ministries of Health, Interior, Ministry of Rural Development, development partners, officers under the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports and representatives of the provincial department Directors of Education, Youth and Sports, who have been involving with this program implementation have achieved outcome. This program is the initiatives of the SEAMEO and GIZ organizations. These NGOs also implement this school health education projects in other countries including Lao, Philippines, Indonesia  who support the implementation of program, by working in collaboration with the general department of Health Studies, and government's stakeholders who have dedicated all the efforts.

Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports has set the promotion of health at schools indispensably and put this work into the Strategic Plan of Education 2014-2018 aiming at increasing the school presence and improve the quality of education to meet the needs of labor market in the region and in the world, particularly for ASEAN Community Economics Integration framework.

The Cambodian government in 5th mandate has been implementing the Rectangular Strategy Phase 3. So the education and health sector are still pre-requisites among priorities of other sectors, and they are tools to support prestige, prosperity and happiness of its Cambodian people. The main objective of the Royal Government of Cambodia is to build a strong Cambodian society, strengthening peace, stability and social order, democracy enhancement, promoting human rights respects and dignity, ensuring the sustainability and development with equity and strengthen solidarity relationship in society so that to ensure that the Cambodian people have a good education, civilized culture, improve living standard within dignity and harmonization, quote of the Minister in his dedication to implement the program funded by partners.

In order to achieve this great ambition crucial goal, they must not forget one importance is to give Cambodian children health education to prevent diseases. So far, all the development partners (active players) are actively to engage with education and health care, disease prevention and treatment to enable people getting out the spread of diseases and to stay healthy. We all know that healthy children will be good at school.

In the past, the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports has actively contributed to the improvement of health in schools, in which they also developed policies on health studies and other policies in terms of strengthening the health services in schools, such as education, and prevention of infectious diseases, non-communicable diseases safety and well-being on food, nutrition, enhancing learning environment, as well as hygiene promotion through a partnership with development partners, the private sectors and the community as well.

Producing of this manual for school and community under "Fit For Schools" program would contribute a more significance for the promotion of quality and efficiency of education and helping to reduce infectious disease rates, to reduce child mortality which related to diarrhea diseases, acute respiratory infection disease and malnutrition by implementing a simple way, "Wash your hands with soap" routinely before eating and after leaving the toilet. This is a simple and easy way for carrying out –less costly but gain much benefits, qualified human resources for social development.

The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports has implemented the "Fit for School" program under supportiveness both technical assistance and funding from partners in some primary schools, including regular hand washing, tooth brushing and deworming by taking pill 2 times per day. Some recent years, the Ministry has issued several regulations regarding to hand washing, taking pill for deworming. Moreover it marked the hand washing Day under the theme "I'm smart! I wash with soap, "along with sanitary Day under the theme" hygiene stemming from you" because the lacking of hygiene factors contributed to the Cambodian people experienced poverty.

In addition, the provincial departments of Education, Youth and Sports have to equip sanitation facilities in schools, such as bathroom hand-washing place and clean water too.

The Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports really appreciate all development partners’
civil society organizations and the private sectors who participate in hygiene promotion activities in schools because within education investment we will gain benefits at present and future.

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