The biggest barrier to an education is ill health.
HealthStart breaks down that barrier.
Thanks in part to the Millennium Development Goals, 90% of children in the developing world now have access to school, but malnutrition, malaria, diarrhea, worms and other health issues stop those children from learning even if they make it to school. By tackling all of these issues, HealthStart means children actually get an education.
Phase 1 - our pilot - saw school pass rates go from 40% - 87% in our two schools. Phase 2 will see us roll HealthStart out to 25 schools by the end of 2016. By phase 3 in 2020, we want to launch 100 HealthStart schools. That’s 80,000 children.We've improved HealthStart. We've made it cheaper. We need to test it at scale. It starts in 2016.
Comic Relief to fund HealthStart
Posted on 14th Dec 2015
Following our announcement at The Shindig, we are very happy to share some wonderful news...our funding application to Comic Relief for the next phase of HealthStart has been approved!
We are delighted to be receiving over £320k to roll out HealthStart to 25 schools, supporting 10,000 children in Kisumu County. We’ll be working closely with two of our most well-established partners, Omega Foundation and Ogra Foundation, to develop and deliver the programme, each managing different components that will benefit from our complementary skills and experience.
This iteration will focus on capacity building and systems strengthening. This means moving away from delivering the health interventions in schools, instead concentrating on improving the schools’ and communities’ understanding of the importance of effective school health and providing the ability to manage and deliver the interventions themselves.
This phase is focussed on the long term; we’ve developed a programme that we think we can replicate at scale. HealthStart will therefore support not just the children currently in those schools, but generations of children growing up in the same communities.
The process we went through for this funding was rigorous; Comic Relief have exacting standards for their grants. We’re thrilled to be working with and learning from a leader in the development sector who see the value in what we’re doing and are willing to help us achieve it.
To find out more, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
The whole is greater than the sum of the parts
All the evidence points to the fact that when tackling health problems - you need to do them all. Just providing clean water, or malaria nets, or deworming tablets can help, but it can also exacerbate the other problems. You need to do a comprehensive intervention. The FRESH framework from the UN and WHO makes this very clear, but it’s also expensive and complicated. We wanted to prove that it can be done, and that it works.With our partners in Kenya we ran a pilot in two schools, to 2,000 children, over three years. We tackled malaria, malnutrition, worms, diarrhoea and waterborne diseases. By tackling them all together we showed the impact can be huge. We’re building on that evidence now.
Where we work
Currently HealthStart is working in Western Kenya. Over the next three years we will begin to work in Uganda, Ghana and Sierra Leone.
One simple intervention (water/malaria nets/deworming tablets) doesn’t work - or if it does, it doesn’t last. We are determined to change the way health and education intertwine for good.
HealthStart works with schools, local government and the community to put in place a system that will have a sustainable impact on every pupil.
We work with each school to ensure they are embedding health services and teaching health skills. It’s the school that will deliver the services in the long term - so we need to work with them.
We set up health clubs within the schools for both children but also parents and other members of the community. Communities hold the school to account.
We help the schools ensure they get the malaria nets and deworming tablets they’ve been promised by the government. We work with each school to see what other services they need - nutritional supplements, clean water, sanitation and help find ways to deliver those sustainably.
It is essential we know what works and what doesn’t. We teach the schools to capture and share their results so that we can continue to learn and monitor which schools need further support.
How you can help
We’ve funded 20 of the 100 schools we need to run the next phases of HealthStart. We need your help to fund the rest.
A monthly donation is the best way to help us fund HealthStart. We won’t tell you that your monthly donation of £100 saves 100 children. It’s not as simple as that. Read why we need Child.org core.
If you want to help us spread HealthStart and get rid of the barriers stopping children from getting an education, take a look at our Do something page and take your first step.