Academy targets youth for wellness

2010-06-02 00:00

THE KwaZulu-Natal Health Department has introduced a wellness centre for the young at Edendale Hospital.

Yesterday, the department and Africaid, a non-profit organisation that supports girls’ education in Africa, launched a youth health and wellness project, the “WhizzKids United Health Academy” at the hospital.

This forms part of the June 16 celebrations to mark the 34th anniversary of the Soweto Uprising in 1976.

The aim of the project is to interact more closely with young people and to bring government services closer to them throughout the month and beyond.

Department spokesperson Chris Maxon said the academy will serve an exclusively adolescent patient population with vital clinical services such as HIV testing and counselling, and treatment and management of sexually transmitted infections.

Administration and management of anti-retroviral (ARV) treatment as well as psycho-social support groups for youth living with HIV and Aids will also be a focal point.

“The academy will feature a computer resource centre and offer other services such as football teams, homework clubs, career guidance and educational videos.

“Healthcare workers will be fully trained and receive additional training to meet the needs of adolescents,” said Maxon.

The chief executive officer of Edendale Hospital, Zanele Ndwandwe, said football can be a driving force that unites people across cultural and religious differences as it constitutes a universal language.

She added that enjoyment and health education can “derive from the game”.

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