Health Promotion Awareness poster insights into Cape Town schools and communities social ills
After 6 weeks of intensive community outreach and scientific investigation into troubling social ills in disadvantaged communities, students from UWC’s Dentistry and Community and Health Sciences Faculties were happy to present the results of their findings on 9 November 2017.
The community outreach and engagement “Health Promotion Poster Presentation” project was launched by the University of the Western Cape’s (UWC) Faculty of Community and Health Sciences Interprofessional Education Unit (IPEU), under the leadership of Dr Firdouza Waggie.
“This was a pilot project,” explained Dr Waggie, “and unique in the sense that it brought together two faculties - Dentistry and Community and Health Sciences - to collaborate and address social ills, health-oriented problems and issues in communities.”
Students were placed in various previously disadvantaged and township schools around Cape Town and they were then given the responsibility of investigating common and troubling social ills in those communities.
In some instances, they felt connected to the school and the kids they engaged and interacted with - as with 2nd year Social Work student Eleanor Slamat, who described the project as all about empowering a school learning community.
The project was an eye opener for many UWC students, encouraging diverse group of students from various backgrounds to work together and exposing them to an environment some had never encountered - and in the process it also broke down stereotypes.
“The experience was empowering to us,” said Zenande Ncentani, 2nd year Occupational Therapy student. “Even though it was a short period, we felt we could make more impact and make it sustainable.”
To conclude their research and investigation, students were tasked with designing a scientific poster that detailed and displayed the context, findings, outcomes, experiences and possible solutions to the varying health and social challenges in those schools and communities.
The poster that wins in all judging aspects, will win a trip to attend 2018 Network TUFH Conference in Ireland and an opportunity to present their poster and hold an information sharing session with delegates.
Some of the key themes presented in the posters included:
• Personal Development
• Bullying (Holistic Approach to Bullying) and Violence in Schools
• Alcohol, Substance and Drug Abuse: Prevention
• Developing a Sense of Self-Worth
• Cultural and Health Promotion in Underprivileged Schools
• How Race, Culture and Gender can Impact on Social Development
• Sex Education in Schools
• Stay awake! Be Clean: Hygiene Movement in Delft
• Youth Empowerment as Primary Prevention against Peer Pressure and Substance Abuse
• Wonders of the Body: Sexual Development at Primary School in Delft
• Peer Pressure: Knowing When to Say No