Akhuwat kicked off global diabetes educational program on diabetes last week, educating 2,224 students and 216 teachers. Under the banner of International Diabetes Federation (IDF), kids and Diabetes in Schools (KiDS) program stresses the adoption of healthy eating habits and physical activity among school-age children, for the prevention of Type 2 diabetes. It also encourages a safe and supportive school environment for children with diabetes and hopes to prevent discrimination while raising awareness about the disease.
KiDS have been introduced in Lahore schools as a result of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) signed between Akhuwat and Sanofi Pakistan.
“It was astounding to see over 70% of the children in each session raise their hands to indicate an immediate family member suffering from diabetes. said Izhar -ul- Haq Hashmi, Director, Akhuwat Foundation. “This is alarming and highlights the number of young children at risk. Developing an understanding of diabetes and how it can be prevented, is crucial and can be achieved by changing behaviours and eating habits at an early age.” he added.
The training is conducted through an international toolkit and resources developed by IDF for the KiDS program. “Awareness is not enough; action needs to be taken now. We need to educate children and parents alike and this toolkit by IDF is an excellent resource designed specifically for this purpose” said Anjum Nida Rahman, Head of Corporate Affairs, Sanofi Pakistan. “The inclusion of this book on Nutrition in school curriculum could help families change their eating habits to combat this disease.” She added.
Saira Tahir, the Chairperson of The Trust Schools inaugurated the training sessions while Dr. Tahir Rasool & Dr. Sohail Mumtaz conducted the trainings.
The KiDS program is operational in 13 countries and has already reached more than 340,000 children and 19,800 teachers and school staff worldwide. Hungary and the UAE (United Arab Emirates) have included the programme in their national school curriculum to advocate healthy lifestyles.