Millions of children worldwide are dying from preventable causes. Through regular, health-focused play activities, we can give kids the knowledge, skills and attitudes they need to stay healthy. Our Coaches are trained to create safe, supportive environments where kids can talk openly about the important health topics that affect them like HIV and AIDS, malaria, sexual and reproductive health, and hygiene.
Learning the truth about their health and the diseases that affect their communities empowers children to stand up against misinformation and negative stigmas. They develop respect for themselves and their bodies and practice tolerance and empathy towards others.
Hygiene and Sanitation: Each year, diarrheal diseases kill 760,000 children under five years. It's the second-leading cause of death in that age group Activities that teach the importance of washing your hands properly through a relay race, will not only make kids smile, but just might save their lives.
Malaria: In a game of Mosquito Tag, children chased by "mosquitoes" have to stand in one place if they're tagged and act out the symptoms of malaria until a "doctor" can help them. Not only is it fun, it also teaches them how to recognize and react to the symptoms of a disease that is killing one child a minute in Africa.
HIV and AIDS: When it comes to more taboo topics like how HIV is spread and the importance of correct condom use, youth in our programs find a safe environment where games and Coach-led discussions can break the ice and open up life-saving conversations about sexual and reproductive health.
Ten-year-old Sheila is on a mission to talk about the dangers of malaria and to make sure her family and community understand how important it is to use the malaria net properly, every night.
A primary school student in northeastern Ghana, Shelia learned about the dangers of malaria through weekly play-based activities, including specially-designed health games like Under the Net. She learned how to recognize its symptoms and how to prevent it and has transferred this knowledge to her own life to protect her health.
Through weekly play-based activities, including specially-designed health games like Under the Net, Shelia learned about the dangers of malaria. She learned how to recognize its symptoms and ways of preventing it, she also learned how she could transfer that knowledge to her own life to protect her health.
"Sheila consistently asked questions and made contributions during our Reflect-Connect-Apply discussions at the end of each game," says teacher and Right To Play-trained Coach, Daniel Akadigre. "So I was not surprised when her mother told me Sheila was insisting every child in her family and neighborhood needed a mosquito net to sleep under."
In 2013, malaria alone caused 584,000 deaths. Despite being treatable and preventable, malaria remains the top cause of death of children under five, killing roughly one child every minute.
Sheila is trying to change that number.