11 Nov 10, New Delhi: Arogya World launched the framework for its Healthy Schools* and Healthy Workplace** ‘Seal of Approval’ in New Delhi this morning, to mark World Diabetes Day, 14 November 2010. The programme, which has been developed in partnership with HRIDAY-SHAN, the Centre for Chronic Disease Control (CCDC), and the Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI), prominent Delhi-based public health organizations, is based on a thorough review of existing guidelines in India and the United States. Schools and workplaces in India will be invited to participate in this initiative, and will be recognized for their health promotion efforts. More details on the Seals of Approval will be available at www.arogyaworld.org.
Dr. Nalini Saligram, the founder of Arogya World, a non-profit organization that, in India, is fostering prevention of non-communicable diseases such as diabetes through lifestyle changes, said, “We have, taken on the huge challenge of tackling chronic diseases such as diabetes in India head on. These two Seals of Approval are a pivotal part of Arogya World’s India programme and we believe they will motivate schools and workplaces to promote better health, building momentum for a health movement in the country.”
Speaking during the launch Dr. Monika Arora, Senior Director of HRIDAY-SHAN, and faculty member of PHFI, said, “Behaviors get etched at an early age and health promotion in schools provide a conducive environment to adopt healthy lifestyle practices during these formative years, which can have a lasting and lifelong effect on individuals and their families. Youth engagement benefits young people not just at individual level but also empowers them to become change agents to influence community behaviors as well”.
Dr. Prabhakaran, head of CCDC, and faculty member of PHFI said, “There is compelling evidence that exercise, diet and avoiding tobacco can prevent serious non-communicable diseases like diabetes which is reaching pandemic proportions in this country. Work places are an ideal platform for such public health interventions”.
Ms. Rita Banerjee, health activist and film maker said, “Good health is a gift and we cannot take it for granted. I think every individual has to be responsible for their health and make an effort to be fit. It is the foundation for everything we do in our lives.”
Arogya World is also organizing an event on 14 November 2010, World Diabetes Day, at Dilli Haat to create public awareness on diabetes and its prevention. Experts on the subject will be there to provide information and answer questions.
Arogya World works to reduce the global impact of chronic non-communicable diseases (NCDs), one community at a time. Serving as a global catalyst, the organization is putting a spotlight on NCDs, and is at the forefront of a movement that is galvanizing action to prevent these serious diseases. The incidence of diabetes has reached catastrophic levels. In India, the organization is demonstrating its commitment to this urgent health crisis by focusing its efforts on prevention of diabetes through lifestyle changes.
Arogya World is a U.S. based non-profit organization striving to change the course of chronic disease. The name of the organization is simply an articulation of its mission: Arogya in Sanskrit means good health. More literally it means to live a life without disease. See arogyaworld.org for more information.
HRIDAY – SHAN (Health Related Information Dissemination Amongst Youth – Student Health Action Network) is a voluntary organization of public health professionals, social scientists and lawyers, engaged in advocacy aiming to promote health awareness and informed health activism among youth in India, since 1992, with a goal to reduce the burden of chronic diseases in India. The HRIDAY- SHAN school and community based health education programmes have been successful in inculcating healthy lifestyle practices among Indian youth (results evaluated and published). Informed health advocacy by youth is an innovative component which has helped to catalyze health action in tobacco control and through the HRIDAY-SHAN programmes schools have become portals of health education for neighborhood communities. It was awarded the WHO Director General’s Award for contributions to tobacco control in 2002. This programme has been listed as a ‘Best Practice Model’ and recommended for global replication by WHO.
Centre for Chronic Disease Control (CCDC) is a New Delhi based not-for-profit research organization of health professionals and social scientists engaged in knowledge generation and knowledge translation for the prevention and control of non-communicable (chronic) diseases in varied settings of the developing countries. CCDC functions as the Scientific Secretariat for the Initiative for Cardiovascular Health Research in the Developing Countries (IC –Health). IC Health is a global partnership programme, involving 14 global organizations including the Global Forum for Health Research and the World Health Organization which jointly launched the programme in 1999.
The Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI) is an institute that focuses on broad dimensions of public health that encompass promotive, preventive and therapeutic services, many of which are frequently lost sight of in policy planning as well as in popular understanding.
* The Framework for Healthy Schools Seal of Approval is now open for comment. We are inviting broad stakeholder input to refine the criteria and reach consensus.
** The Framework for Healthy Workplace Seal of Approval is now open for comment. We are inviting broad stakeholder input to refine the criteria and reach consensus.