“It was such a meaningful and interesting teacher training session!” “We have never, ever had a good training course like this!” “I didn’t even mind that it was on the weekend outside work time!”
These are just a few answers from the teachers who were asked about a recent First Aid skills hosted by the CWS as part of an ongoing initiative in rural northern Vietnam called NEW IDEA. Ma Thi Diep represented her kindergarten school at training workshop together with teachers from other schools in their commune. To be sure to address schools’ needs, the training covered a variety of information about how to react and behave in various situations that are closely relevant to remote, rural Vietnamese schools, which are very far from well-staff health clinics, usually. Topics as diverse as bone breaks, burns, bleeding, snake bites, food poisoning and choking were covered. And there was even information, in an area full of mountain streams, about resuscitating children who have almost drowned. During the workshop, Diep shared a story about a student who broke both her clavicle and some ribs, which no one at the school could deal with because none had First Aid practice. After the story, participants shared a lot of idea about what they would have done, but none gave a fully proper First Aid solution. This was true for some less drastic accidents and illnesses, too. But, the good news is that the trainer’s explanation and guidance held everyone realize the importance of correct First Aid knowledge as well as practicing skills, which all the teachers were happy to have a chance to do.
A training course like this, with both practical and theoretical components, was very helpful to the teachers and they were grateful for the chance to have CWS support to build safer environments, and the possibility of basic First Aid in schools that have no health staff to treat accidents or illness among children.
In several Asian countries – Cambodia, Indonesia and Vietnam – CWS teams work with school directors and teachers to bring basic support for children’s physical wellness and wellbeing in a variety of ways: First Aid training, which they seldom receive during their teacher training education; disaster response, which involves evacuation and safe ‘shelter in place’ simulations, and promotion of safe classrooms where corporal and verbal punishment are discouraged.
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