Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Health and environmental week in Fushe-Kruja: Raising awareness for health and environmental protection

From 19 to 22 of May 2014, ADRA education team in collaboration with ADRA health team organised a health and environmental week for the Roma women and children in Fushe-Kruja.
Our main focus this week were the young Roma girls and women because they play a key role in the future on their children education.  The topics that ADRA team discussed were malnutrition, healthy food, prevention of diseases and environmental protection.

As you already know, the Roma people in Albania and also in Fushe-Kruja are struggling with many issues and problems in their daily life. The main challenges are poverty, racism and the lack of education. The low level of education also leads to bad nutrition, problems in prevention of different diseases and environmental pollution.

The aim of this week was not only to raise awareness of the Roma for health issues but also to reflect on environment issues. Therefore ADRA education and health team had prepared many materials and activities to make the problems more visible to participants. In the same time our aim was to find solutions together to these issues.

On Monday, ADRA health team was discussing with the Roma women and girls about malnutrition. To distinguish healthy food from non-healthy food, ADRA health team showed the Roma women how much packages of sugar are in a can of coca cola or energy drinks and how much sugar normally you should consume during one day. ADRA health team also used a picture of the human body to explain the digestion process and how too much sugar and fat harm our body and our organs. In the end of this activity, ADRA health team gave examples for healthy food and what we should eat in our daily life in order to take care of our body.

On Wednesday, our focus was to talk about the problems of environmental pollution but also about environmental protection. Therefore, we showed the Roma women different pictures of a clean environment but also pictures of a polluted and dirty environment. All Roma women agreed that they preferred the clean environment and that they want to see their children growing up in a peaceful, clean and natural environment.
To demonstrate the problem of environmental pollution and their relation with our health, we made an activity with the Roma women where we pointed out how plastic garbage will find the way back from the rivers on our plate and how dangerous this is for our organism. We showed to them the risks and consequences of polluted water and food.
The Roma women were very concerned about this information and also about the fact that they and their families are living in a very polluted environment.

In the end, we showed them some possible ways how they can prevent and decrease environmental pollution. For example, ADRA team raised awareness that they should use as less plastic bags as possible and that they should use a bin. Lubjana, one of the Roma women of the Roma Community in Fushe-Kruja said: “We want to live in a clean environment but nobody of us has a bin at home and the big trash bin in the street is every time full with garbage because the municipality does not empty it regularly.“
We explained the Roma women how they can easy use plastic bags from the shops as trash bags and that they should no throw their garbage into the river and into the street.

We completed the environmental day with a cleaning activity of the Roma community in Fushe-Kruja, were the Roma children as well as the Roma women participated. This day everybody was active to make our environment in Fushe-Kruja a little bit cleaner, more beautiful and to set an example for a better and healthier tomorrow.

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