Projects

54. Rollback Malaria and absenteeism in Uganda schools using Artemisia annua, Cymbopogon citratus medicinal plants

Description

Planting school gardens with Artemisia annua and/or Cymbopogon citratus and highly nutritious plants in 2 schools in each of the 12 districts as catalyst to encourage the government to extend the approach on a national scale

Duration : 24 months
Promotor : IDAY-Uganda
Beneficiaries : 24 000 pupils and 720 teachers from 24 schools
Total budget : 78 690 €
Outside financing sought : 58 680 €

Country: Uganda

Project

Encouraged by the favourable dispositions of the Ugandan Government towards Artemisia annua, a first school garden project implemented in 5 schools in 2014 and MATO’s (Malaria, AIDS and Rights Organisation) 2 acres experiment around a girls dormitory, MATO with the help of an agent of the Ministry of Health, has decided to launch a broader programme over 12 districts. Artemisia annua is a plant of Chinese origin used successfully against malaria. It has proven an effective repellent against the malaria-carrier mosquito, helps prevent the disease and, at higher doses, can cure malaria crises. It has no side effect and seems to be a true polytherapy that withstands malaria resistances better than the medication. Artemisia annua is very demanding, in particular in terms of water consumption and is usefully replaced by lemongrass (Cymbopogon citratus) in dryer areas. Completing the gardens with highly-nutritious crops also helps improve the health of the pupils and hence their school performance. The project comprises medical tests to verify the impact on children’s health, exchange of students to accelerate the transmission of the know-how about cultivation practices, an independent evaluation at the end of the project period and advocacy campaigning to encourage government authorities to disseminate the project school garden concept on a national scale.

Expected results

> Sharp reduction in school absenteeism and rise in scholastic results measured by the rate of pupils obtaining passing grades at end of year tests.
> Improved health of the pupils, teachers and their families and surrounding.
> Reduction in girls’ menstrual pains and absence from school.
> Reduction in health costs for schoolchildren families and schools that have health programmes.

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