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Latest News Children in mozambique wear malaria hats

School children in Inhambane Receive the President of Mozambique Wearing Malaria Hats

31 March 2007

In 2007 Malaria Consortium has started a new activity within its communication strategy plan, to involve school children in malaria mobilization for the ongoing "under the net" campaign. This campaign was launched at the start of the rainy season in 2006 (November) and has been continued throughout 2007, focusing on special malaria dates such as the Africa Malaria Day (25th of April).

On that occasion the posters with fun exercises on malaria were first introduced in 13 primary schools in the 3 provinces, involving over 200 teachers and over 14.000 pupils. The exercise has become known as the "malaria hat exercise" because after the exercises are finished the children get to fold the poster into a fashionable hat showing the slogan "protect yourself, sleep under a net". The exercise was so successful that the provincial education authorities requested MC to provide the exercise on a more regular basis and work with them on the development of more materials to include in the school curriculum.

In Inhambane, the provincial education department decided to introduce the "malaria hats" in 7 additional primary schools with over 10.000 children, to add to the festivities of the 1st of June (world child day). As it turns out, the Mozambican President Mr. Guebuza, decided to plan a visit to Inhambane province coinciding with the 1st of June celebrations in that province. Therefore the school children receiving the president and marching in honour of his arrival all put on the colourful malaria hats.

Edutainment to pass on malaria messages to and through school children:

The "malaria hat" is a two side printed poster with information on malaria and several exercises linked to malaria knowledge. It contains some malaria facts for children and a story on malaria for children.

The exercises vary from a quiz, to cross word puzzle and some "malariamatics" math exercises to increase the understanding on how malaria affects income, productivity etc.

The idea is to present information on malaria in a way that is interesting for the children and fun to do. Also the exercises are designed to fit into normal classes (language, maths etc.). When done, the poster can be folded into a hat (step by step instructions included in poster).



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