Leifiifi College Principal, Malaea Lauano, spearheaded the ”Health Week” at her school last week, before the nation was hit by Cyclone Gita.
The programme was coordinated by Chiaki Sakakibara, a Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteer working at the school and Etulasi Nati, Leififi College’s Deputy Principal.
They had some help from the Samoa National Kidney Foundation General Manager, Mulipola Lose Hazelman and Samoa Family Health Association Executive Director, Lealaiauioto Liai Iosefa Siitia.
All the students measured their height and weight during the week.
The students were then taught about “Nutrition Education” by Ms. Yuka Oyama, Japan Overseas Cooperation Volunteer, who is working with Samoa National Kidney Foundation.
They also learnt about “Sexual Transmitted Infection” from Alapati Anoia and Tautala Utaia’ana Mamoe who are from Samoa Family Health Association.
The Health Week was designed:
• To improve interests and awareness of health.
• To know your height and weight, use it for your own health care. If you continue to take your measurements, you will see your growth clearly and check the basic physical condition.
• To learn the importance of Nutrition
• To learn of Sexual Transmitted Infection
It addressed issues like physical measurements for all students, blood glucose level, nutrition, and sexually transmitted infection. The health of teachers was also assessed.
The students enjoyed the week.
“I think it is important to know my height and weight. Because it will help to control myself. I should measure every day,” one student said. “I want to know my own measurements to protect my health.”
Another student said the nutrition presentation was a good opportunity to think about eating less junk food, sweets and candies.
“I think that it is important because without this health program the students will keep on doing bad habits that will cause them to have an unhealthy body.”
Sex education was equally important.
“Sex education helped me to know my choices when I grow up,” one student said.
Ms. Sakakibara said the week is a critical one not just for the school but the entire nation.
“I hope that physical measurements will be done yearly at all schools in Samoa. This show that students are growing properly,” she said.
“Also, it is the chance for them to have an interest in their body and health. Measuring height and weight is very simple. However it is the first step to help lead you to a healthy life.”