The overall objective of the project is to foster adoption of healthy life styles among children in primary schools in urban areas of Croatia and Slovenia. This will be achieved through development and implementation of the innovative programme for health promotion (Healthy Eco Life programme). The idea is to test innovative approaches in health promotion in one candidate country and in one member state to compare the effects of proposed programme in countries with different social and cultural backgrounds as well as economic development levels. Methodology of the programme will be based on EU best practices in health promotion but complemented with ecological awareness aspect of the health. Learning about health through interactive group work in classes will be combined with practical lessons provided in natural and rural context. As a main part of the programme the school children from urban areas of Zagreb and Maribor will visit eco-agricultural farms in the rural areas.
This project will add value to following priority areas stated in the second Health program and annual work plan;building capacity for development and implementation of effective public health policies particularly in areas of high need;involvement of new (non-traditional)actors for health in sustained,cooperative and ethically sound actions, both at regional or local level and across participating countries. This includes the public sector,the private sector and stakeholders among wider civil society whose primary aims are not limited to public health. More specifically this project will contribute to the program objectives under priority 2;‘Promote Health’ under the specific subject 220.127.116.11 “Children and Young People" through promoting the health and well-being of children through informal and non-formal education.
A workshop and several meetings for Croatian stakeholders will be organized to identify and exchange best practices in the field of health promotion for school children. As a follow up of the workshop short report on best practices will be elaborated containing review of EU legislation and policy papers and concrete examples of best practices will be elaborated, printed and disseminated to relevant stakeholders. Children needs analysis will be done through adapted questionnaire. Implementation and promotion of HEEL programme: there will be 126 workshops for 700 children in Croatia and Slovenia (600 in Croatia and 100 in Slovenia). The workshops in classrooms will last for 2 hours and workshops on organic farms will last a whole day with the emphasis on practical knowledge and hands on training in ecological production. Follow up of ideas and projects (following HEEL concept)will be developed which could be implemented in the new Member states and/or candidate countries.
Stakeholders involved in health promotion field in Croatia will have a clear picture on state of the art in their field in the EU and which steps need to be undertaken in Croatia to align with Community policies. Innovative health promotion education programme will be tailored according to the needs of children in urban areas and based on ecological awareness developed. Formal education programmes in primary schools related to health promotion will be complemented and improved with innovative, proactive approach based on practical experience of nature. The basis of knowledge and human capital able to address health issues and promote healthy life styles through the whole life cycle created. Through pilot testing of the HEEL programme awareness and knowledge of children on importance of healthy living will be increased and healthy habits adopted. Experiences from implementation of HEEL programme will bring added value to EU policies and practices in the field of health promotion.