Healthy Environments for Children Alliance listserv
The Healthy Environments for Children Alliance listserv (HECANET) is an international mailing list dedicated to promoting healthy environments for children. The list provides updates on the activities of the Healthy Environments for Children Alliance (HECA), advocacy tools and information resources, relevant meeting announcements, and reports on technical research and monitoring related to environmental risks to children's health.
- The Children of Colombia: Manifesto for a Healthy Environment
- Water, Sanitation, and Health Web site
- WHD 2003 and HEC Resources on the SEAR Web site
- Let's Protect Our Children: Let's Clean the Air
The Children of Colombia: Manifesto for a Healthy Environment
Dr Alvaro Uribe Vélez, President of Colombia, signed off on the "Manifesto for a Healthy Environment" on 7 April, World Health Day 2003. His signature was indicative of the highest possible level of national political commitment to the issue Healthy Environments for Children. The preparation of the Manifesto--which had been carried out with the participation of more than 3,500 children, teachers, and parents throughout the country--was an initiative of President Uribe; the ministries of social protection, the environment, housing and education; the National Institute of Health; UNICEF; and PAHO/AMRO. To read the Manifesto (in Spanish), please see: http://www.col.ops-oms.org/diamundial/2003/manifiesto.asp.
Water, Sanitation, and Health Web site
Household water security and adequate hygiene and sanitation are essential components of healthy environments for children. WHO's Water, Health and Sanitation Programme has recently launched a new Web site: http://www.who.int/water_sanitation_health/en/. The site features a wealth of information materials, technical guidelines/studies, and advocacy tools. Factsheets on over twenty water-related diseases, many of which disproportionately effect children, and estimates of the global burden of water-related disease are available. One can also find guidelines on important water safety issues like drinking water quality and recreational bathing waters, the guidelines for the later of which are soon to be published in the Bathing Waters section.
WHD 2003 and HEC Resources on the SEAR Web site
Reports on World Health Day 2003 activities and resources for further HEC advocacy/education are available on the Web site of the WHO Regional Office for South-east Asia (SEARO). Window on SEAR, Vol. 3 Issue 1, June 2003--located at http://w3.whosea.org/extrelations/vol3-1.htm --includes a detailed account of select World Health Day 2003 celebrations. To support ongoing actions, factsheets with key statistics on the impact of environmental threats to children's health, as well as strategies to protect children from such threats, can be found at the below links:
- Unsafe Drinking Water (http://w3.whosea.org/whd2003/pdf/1unsafe.pdf)
- Hygiene and Sanitation (http://w3.whosea.org/whd2003/pdf/2Hygiene.pdf)
- Air Pollution (http://w3.whosea.org/whd2003/pdf/3Air%20Pollution.pdf)
- Vector-Borne Diseases (http://w3.whosea.org/whd2003/pdf/4VectorBorne.pdf)
- Chemical Risks (http://w3.whosea.org/whd2003/pdf/5ChemicalRisks.pdf)
- Accidents and Violence (http://w3.whosea.org/whd2003/pdf/6Accidentsand.pdf)
Let's Protect Our Children: Let's Clean the Air
"Protejamos a nuestros niños. Limpiemos el aire" [Let's Protect Our Children: Let's Clean the Air] was the theme of this year's Inter-American Air Quality Day, celebrated August 8th. According to a background document for the day, more than 30 million children in Latin America and the Caribbean breathe unhealthy air. The document states that children are particularly vulnerable to air pollution for two reasons: children take in more air in proportion to their bodyweight and lung size, and children's bodies are developing and are more susceptible to irritations and illnesses. In commemoration of the Inter-American Air Quality Day, two informative presentations were prepared on the theme of children's health and air pollution in Latin America and the Caribbean. To view the presentations (available in Spanish only), or to read the above cited background document, please see the Web site of El Centro Panamericano de Ingeniería Sanitaria y Ciencias del Ambiente (CEPIS): http://www.cepis.ops-oms.org/bvsci/E/diaaire2003/diaaire2003.html.