A life at school with the terrible headaches and fever of malaria is part of every day life for many of Uganda’s school children. But this has all changed at 4 primary schools in the heart of Uganda’s malaria region. In these schools, trained teachers diagnose and treat malaria as soon as the child begins to feel ill. After a positive diagnosis using a simple kit and just one pill, the child has usually fully recovered in a day and able to return to school. In the past, a child would be absent for 10-15 days with each bout of the disease, leaving them debilitated for many days longer and sometimes affecting their life-long learning capability. Many children die each year from untreated Malaria.
We are coming to the end of this important study and our next task will be to publish and disseminate these results as widely as possible. We believe this simple intervention has the potential to change children’s lives, save lives, improve school attendance and reduce the suffering and consequences of repeated bouts of childhood malaria. We will not abandon our test schools at the end of our trial but we will continue to provide them with kits, medication and support. We are working with the Ugandan Ministy of Health to explore avenues to expand this program throughout the region.
This program is supported by the whole community with parents, health workers and community leaders attending meetings and providing ideas and input. As a result, there has been a big increase in the local knowledge of malaria and how it is spread. All sorts of small initiatives have sprung up to reduce mosquito breeding sites and increase the use of bed nets. The schools have expanded their health education and now have community gardens growing Vitamen A enriched sweet potatoes and other vegetables.
If you would like to support this program, $35 will purchase malaria medication for 10 children. To donate, please follow the link below and select Hillman Fund at the top. Thank-you for your support!