Holistic health promotion in Hungarian schools (HHP)

 

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Introduction

After an insisting struggle from the side of public health followed by an effective intersectorial cooperation at the governmentel level, holistic health promotion (HHP) in all Hungarian schools is prescribed by low since 2012. The aim of the presentation is to show how the intersectorial cooperation is working in Hungary for HHP and what are the challenges now. 

Holistic health promotion in Hungarian schools: short summary

In Hungary the holistic health promotion (HHP) for schools is prescribed by law since 2012 and it means a holistic, whole school approach where health promotion has to be part of the every day life of the school - with participation of the whole school, parents and the public environment. HHP contains four health promoting tasks for teachers to do in their every day work:

  1. Healthy eating - potentially based on local food products;
  2. Daily physical education fulfilling health promotion criteria and other forms of physical activity;
  3. Use of appropriate pedagogic methods (including also the use of arts) to enhance mental health;
  4. Improving health literacy and health competencies of the children.

András Halbritter
Hungarian Foundation for School Gardens

In this program teachers get help in doing all their daily health promotion tasks of holistic health promotion /HHP, see short summary in the frame/: in improving healthy eating, promoting physical activity, enhancing mental health and improving health literacy + health competencies of children.

After the 19th and 20th century’s flourishing of school gardens a renaissance has come worldwide, including Hungary, school gardens have spread over the world in various countries. The Hungarian national school garden survey in 2018 found 1118 educational sites (8 % of all school and kindergarten locations) that use garden pedagogy. Since than the numbers have grown… but what is the reason behind?

In this program teachers get help in doing their fourth health promotion task of holistic health promotion /HHP, see short summary in the frame above/: improving health literacy and health competencies of children.

The increasing prevalence of skin tumors, the uncritical spread of tattooing and piercing and the increase in the proportion of young patients having sexually transmitted diseases in the recent years has supported the need for educational programs for young individuals. For this reason, we have launched a series of informative lectures covering various topics of skin and sexual medicine for young population between 14-18 years of age, in the form of 20-minute lectures. At the end of 2017, a Skin Health Team called “BőrŐrök” (”Skin Guards”) was established, and the Skin Health Program was launched.

(In this network social sector gives help to teachers in doing their 3rd and 4th health promotion task of holistic health promotion /HHP, see short summary in the frame above/: improving mental health; developing health literacy and health competencies of children.)

Why was kindergarten and school social work introduced?

In recent years social changes have highlighted such problems that become visible when children first get into community. Prevoiusly, the increase in negative tendencies was detected by teachers in schools but over the past few years new problems were shifted to younger ages as well e.g. rise in the number of children having problems with social behaviour, aggression and/or children with mental problems.

(In this program teachers get help in doing their fourth health promotion task of holistic health promotion /HHP, see short summary in the frame above/: improving health literacy and health competencies of children.)

Background

Hungary has been party to the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control since 2005. In recent years, the Government of Hungary has adopted and implemented a series of strong tobacco-control measures.

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