Our goal is to implement and deploy school health programmes appropriately targeting school age and teenage children living in developing countries through our research projects. Project will also aim to improve health and wellbeing of the family members and people living in the communities where the target schools are located. In order to cultivate young researchers, we will strengthen network of research members who are involved in school health projects. Worldwide researcher network will be developed to enable information sharing both domestically and internationally.
GREETINGS OF CHAIRMAN
JC-GSHR: Japanese Consortium for Global School Health Research
Japan Consortium for Global School Health Research (JC-GSHR) was established in 2010 as a think tank and hub for international school health networks. It consists of academic researchers, practitioners, and technical experts in school health-related areas. The goal of our consortium is to implement and deploy school health programs that target school-aged and teenage children living in developing countries through our research projects. Our project also aims to improve the health and well-being of family members and other people living in communities where the target schools are located. To cultivate young researchers, we plan to strengthen the network of research members involved in school health projects. A worldwide network will be developed to enable information sharing both domestically and internationally. JC-GSHR periodically organizes academic conferences and symposiums on school health-related research and practice in Japan as well as abroad. We also provide technical training and hold inter-country meetings on school health management and administration in collaboration with the JICA and other partners. As experts in many developing countries in Asia and Africa, members of the consortium provide academic and technical support for school health and nutrition policy development, teach administrations, aid in the development of health education curricula and materials, and conduct research and evaluation Members also conduct various operational research projects such as the development of human resource training systems for sustainable school health activities in developing countries, and the development of prevention programs for communicable and non-communicable diseases.
Director Jun Kobayashi
Working To Enhance School Health for the Next Generation
The year 2010 was a time when the millennium development goals (MDG) were widely discussed and debated within the context of international development and global health. The emphasis on school health in developing countries has rapidly expanded on a global scale with the focus on MDG Goal 6 (combating HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases). The Hashimoto Initiative also mentions school health in its parasite control and HIV/AIDS activities.
Meanwhile, MDG Goal 5 (improving maternal health) has yet to be achieved globally. As such, attention has increasingly focused on maternal and child health. Although some have suggested that the global trend will be less and less attention paid to school health in the future, I actually believe that school health has significant potential for further promotion. Work has already begun here and there in searching for goals that will succeed the MDGs. Problems such as lifestyle-related illnesses, mental health and trauma, which were not addressed in the MDGs, have come to be viewed as major issues not only in developed nations but also developing nations. For example, the importance has been argued about the link between obesity and poverty for which no global solution has been found as well as mental health and trauma in connection with advancing urbanization in Asia. However, it may be fair to say, in point of fact, that the issue of school health embodies the potential for effectively improving such problems. Moreover, when we consider what a healthy person should be, consideration has been given within the health promotion movement toward viewing happiness based simply on health, thus school health has attracted attention as a highly feasible venue for achieving this end.
Within this context, a movement has also emerged within the network formed under Hashimoto Initiative programs that seeks better school health for the next generation, and Japan is expected not only to drive this shift but also contribute to it. The cooperation and experience of all Consortium members are by all means imperative, and it is my sincere wish that everyone will contribute to this effort to promote even better health around the world. Currently, in Europe, United States as well as Thailand and other medium developed countries, research and assistance for school health continues to be supported through the cooperative efforts undertaken in a wide range of fields including education, epidemiology, health education, parasitology, human ecology, economics, and policy studies. It is my hope that a similar association of researchers in other fields may be constructed in Japan as well. Particularly in developing countries, there is a need to develop flexible concepts and approaches suited to the times without those involved being held back by stereotypes. Therefore, I hope that new ideas and concepts will be generated in the exchange of information and ideas with people in other fields.
Consortium’s Main Activities
The Consortium is engaged in principally five activities.
Research and Practice in School Health
The members of the Japanese Consortium for Global School Health Research are engaged in a variety of research projects and substantive activities in developing nations in Asia and Africa. The programs underway encompass a diverse range and include training personnel for sustainable school health activities and measures to control communicable and non-communicable diseases. Moreover, various practical studies are also being conducted.
Technical Assistance and Personnel Development for School Health Implementation
In collaboration with partners in Japan and around the world, the Japanese Consortium for Global School Health Research has planned and administered international training courses on school health operation and management for government officials in developing nations, global NGO personnel working in such regions and others. The Consortium is affiliated with specialists well-recognized for their research on school health in developing nations in Asia and Africa as well as the development of teaching materials for health education and formulation of policies related to school health.
Development of Practitioners and Young Researchers Through a Research and Practice Network
With the planning of symposiums, workshops, roundtables and other forms at academic gatherings held both in Japan and other countries, these activities facilitate the sharing of the latest research knowledge and practices in school health so as to develop practitioners and young researchers.