4-H Can Assist Health Ministry in Implementing Programmes

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Health Minister, Donville Inniss (r), Chairman of the 4-H Movement, Osmond Harewood (l), and two members of the 4-H Movement, perusing some of the natural wines on offer at the 4-H health hair, held last Saturday in Heroes Square. (C. Pitt/BGIS)

The Barbados 4-H Movement can assist in turning the tide on Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs), which it is estimated by 2030, will be responsible for 86.3 per cent of deaths in Barbados.

This was the contention of Health Minister, Donville Inniss, as he addressed a health fair to mark the 50th Anniversary of the Barbados 4-H Movement, held in Heroes Square, the City, last Saturday.??

He noted that through fairs of this kind and via its district councils, the Barbados 4-H Movement could assist in impacting the pending health profile by heightening public awareness of living healthier lives.?? He also stressed its vital role in forging linkages between agriculture, food, health and national development.?? ??

"I observed that the 4-H Movement has district councils as part of its structure, which aim at assisting with the coordination and planning of programmes at the district level…This type of structure, which essentially deals with the issue of decentralisation, can effectively assist in rolling out our national health programmes at the community level, thus giving rise to enhanced community awareness of, and greater community participation in, health programmes.

"It is absolutely essential that these programmes embrace food security, which is undeniably linked to diet and health, given that an individual, a family, a community and a nation that has access to safe, healthy food, is one that no doubt would be en route to being healthier, and by extension, peaceful and productive," he said.

The Health Minister commended the 4-H movement for increasing interest in agriculture and by extension "creating a stronger and healthier society" by focusing in particular on the youth.??

In addition, the fair featured information booths manned by the Vector Control Unit and the Barbados Family Planning Association, and testing by the Diabetes Association of Barbados and the National HIV Commission.

lisa.bayley@barbados.gov.bb

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