Projects

49. Improving the quality of education with Artemisia annua in schools

Description

Malaria is a significant burden on quality education in the Kigoma region as in many lake areas in Africa: repeated absenteeism (teachers and pupils alike), weakened concentration capacities in class for sick pupils, lower cognitive capacities for children victim of several malaria crisis in their young age, high health expenditures at the expense of education-related investments, etc.. The conventional drugs are inaccessible to a large section of the population due to their high cost and availability issues, especially in remote areas. These drugs are now also subject to resistances. Alternative treatments, in particular with natural polytherapies seem more efficient.

The Artemisia annua plant has been used in China for over 2000 years to treat malaria. The plant’s efficacy has been confirmed in several African countries, and a number of schools and companies using it have recorded significant improvement in personnel performances and reductions in health expenses by up to 80-90%. In several African countries, Artemisia annua has been introduced in schools with promising results.

Beneficiaries: 6 secondary schools and their surrounding communities
Duration: 36 months
Promoter: Kigoma Aids Control Network (KACON)
Total budget: 30 661€
External funding sought: 26 465€

Country: Tanzania (Kigoma)

Project

This project consists in initiating the cultivation of Artemisia annua and some highly nutritious crops in 6 schools and 3 wards in Kigoma municipal, Kigoma rural and Uvinza districts. It is the pilot phase of a wider programme aimed at dissemination the crop in schools across the whole Kigoma region.
This phase will focus on familiarising a number of teachers and youth clubs with the cultivation techniques and use of Artemisia annua, while also producing seed and cuttings to be distributed to surrounding schools. This will be done through the creation of a demonstration area at KACON’s office for dissemination, sensitization and advocacy purposes; the establishment of school-based malaria youth clubs; the creation of school gardens for the cultivation of Artemisia annua and highly nutritious crops; agricultural follow-up by local agricultural services; and medical testing to verify results.
The participants will receive technical assistance from foreign students who have acquired experience with growing and using the crop in their own country.

General Objective

Improve the quality of education.

Specific Objectives
> Raise awareness and empower the youth to take control over malaria through the use of Artemisia annua 

> Reduce malaria-related absenteeism of pupils and teachers
> Reduce malaria-related health expenditures in schools and families
> Improve the nutrition status of the pupils
> Improve school enrolment / attendance and academic performance
> Foster integration of Artemisia annua and highly nutritious plants in school gardens across 
Kigoma region and throughout the country.

Expected Results

> Considerable reduction in families’ health expenditures (related to malaria and malnutrition);
> Significant reduction in malaria incidences in primary schools;
> Reduction of at least 50% in absenteeism by pupils and teachers;
> Community management of the cultivation of Artemisia annua and fruit trees;
> Raise in the enrolment of girls and boys at school;
> Improvement of school performances;
> Diminution of environmental degradation thanks to recycling and agro-ecology;
> Greater sharing of information and best practices, research and innovative ideas from the youth to 
the local communities.

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