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Health in Action ENsanté: lichamelijke en mentale gezondheid over culturele grenzen heen - een praktisch dossier
Date du début: 21 août 2015, Date de fin: 20 juin 2016 PROJET  TERMINÉ 

Sixteen students between the ages of 15 and 18, from Essaouira (Morocco) and Lier (Belgium) will take a broad look at the fundamentals of a healthy lifestyle. Is "health" determined merely by fysical patterns, such as nourishment and general fitness, or does mental health count just as much in the wellbeing of youngsters ? What is offically being promoted as a healthy lifestyle and to which extent do young adults follow such guidelines ? Are there any cultural differences in what is considered as healthy ? More importantly : is a certain lifestyle the cause of fysical or mental (in)sanity ? Why do figures on depression, burn-out, fear of failure and suicide rise so dramatically amongst European youngsters ? Can they learn from the lifestyle and habits of Moroccan youth and, as the project expands, from other young adults worldwide ? Following the selection of the candidates in September, the students will, between October and March investigate different aspects of health within their own culture, by means of a thorough preparatory traject and using primarily non-formal instruments (Youtube, press articles from health/youth magazines, self-examinations, nourishment diaries, pedometer-app, ...). Starting with themselves (quantitative research) and subsequently their nearest peers (qualitative research), a scientific file wille be compiled, bundling all kinds of information on how youngsters of both cultures "live" their health. A lot of attention will go to presenting the conclusions : the objective is to disseminate the results as much as possible among other youngsters via typical channels (facebook, blog, twitter, youtube). To this effect, the students will work together with their teachers to ensure the best practices (playful and personal, but always substantiated) for sharing the results with European youngsters. During the preparatory week, students and teachers will be supported in Morocco by Swira, a non-profit organisation, focussing on cultural and linguistic matters. In Belgium, the same cultural and linguistic support is provided by the Karel de Grote University, Morrocan parents of students at our school, as well as the Morrocan Cultural Society in Lier. Argania, another non-profit organisation will use its extensive network to provide logistic support. Together with Swira, they will ensure the preparation of the hosting families. During a two-day preparatory stay in Essaouira, one teacher and one student from both sides will look into the results of all preliminary research results. All objectives, ways of working and themes will be more closely specified prior to the actual exchange-week during the Easter holidays. At the same time, the hosting families can be visited if and where necessary. During the actual exchange, the 16 selected students will live together, learning a maximum of cultural specifics from each other. Each Belgian student will be hosted by the family of a Morrocan participant. A balance in terms of gender is one of the selection criteria. The students will work together during the 7 days, aiming at cross-cultural, joint objectives. Non-formal activities (such as the personal food pyramid, the notorious 'beep'running test, the interval shuttle run test, personality tests, ...) will lead to a file comprising the determinants of health and the role of cultural-historic factors. Aside from developing a scientifically substantiated health file from a mere content perspective, a lot of attention will go to the attractive presentation of the results to the target group : European youth in general. Inspiring Youtube fragments or tweets, challenges on Facebook, and other media, will promote discussions with other students in the same age-group or incite active contacts with youth-organisations throughout Europe. Two schools joining forces to create an exchange program using non-formal tools and methods provides a perspective of capitalizing on and increasing scale and scope of this initial project in future years. Belgian and Moroccan teachers and students will live through and develop a workable file with guidelines and conclusions on health, ready for use and further study in other European countries. With the aid of Erasmus+, the exchange program between two schools will create a sound basis for enhanced cooperation and mutual learning for youngsters within and outside the European Community.



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