HEALTH BOX - INTEGRATION OF HEALTH ISSUES IN ADULT EDUCATION
1 Die Berater Unternehmensberatungsgesellschaft mbH (AUSTRIA)
2 Università delle LiberEtà del Fvg (ITALY)
About this paper:
Appears in: ICERI2010 Proceedings
Publication year: 2010
Conference name: 3rd International Conference of Education, Research and Innovation
Dates: 15-17 November, 2010
Location: Madrid, Spain
Abstract:Socio-economically disadvantaged adults, with a low level of education and/or a migration background belong to the groups of adults most at risk of acquiring a physical or mental lifestyle disease such as overweight, diabetes, alcoholism, cardiovascular diseases, etc. These adults are less likely to participate in traditional health education or to be reached by health information campaigns. “Health Box”, a project funded by the European Commission for Lifelong Learning with its team consisting of partners from Austria, Germany, Denmark, Italy, Romania, Great Britain and Finland, peruses a strategy designed to help those adults to acquire a healthier lifestyle.
The project’s approach is to address the target group where these adults may be reached rather than expecting them to seek out health education seminars. Adult educators who work with the final beneficiaries of this project in different contexts need to be made aware of health issues and be provided with ready-to use training materials for health promotion which they can easily integrate in classes on subjects other than health. These materials are available in the so called “Health Box” which consists of written material (handouts, presentations, inputs for role plays etc.) and of visual learning materials. Latter are a very effective educational means for disadvantaged learner groups with reading and writing difficulties.
Based on a desk research and needs analysis conducted in the project partners countries the content of the Health Box will be developed. Content areas will include:
• Assessing one’s own health situation, recognizing health risks and unhealthy habits
• Strengthening motivation to adopt healthier lifestyle
• Gaining knowledge about and developing appropriate attitude towards
- Nicotine, alcohol and other drugs
- Balanced nutrition
- Physical exercise
• Promoting mental health and preventing mental illness
• Supporting and advising learners on health issues
The project “Health Box” promotes knowledge, attitudes and skills related to prevent lifestyle diseases and thus enhancing healthy lifestyle habits among European citizens. It addresses key European policies in health, inclusion and education such as “promotion of health among European citizens”, “prevention of lifestyle diseases” (which are estimated by the WHO to make up for 70% of the illnesses in Europe in 2020) or “engagement of disadvantaged adults in lifelong learning.”
The project started in January 2010. Between February and April 2010 a desk research on the topic “health education for adults” was conducted in the participating countries. Furthermore the project partners interviewed adult educators as well as the project’s final beneficiaries – socio-economically disadvantaged adults – about their lifestyle.
To ensure the creation of demand orientated material the content of the “Health Box” will be developed on the base of those results. Both, written as well as visual material will be produced between May and October 2010.
To proof its impact the Health Box will be implemented in existing training settings in the participating countries between December 2010 and April 2011. A profound evaluation selects feedback from trainers and final beneficiaries. Its outcomes will serve the improvement and finalisation of the Health Box.
The main Health Box project’s results and products will be presented at an international dissemination conference in autumn 2011.
Keywords: Adult education, Health promotion, social disadvantaged people, lifestyle diseases, Life long learning, integration of health issues.