Schools play a crucial role in a child’s life by shaping their education and behaviours. Promoting diabetes education and healthy lifestyles in the school environment can help ensure a healthy and prosperous tomorrow.
An estimated 1.1 million children and adolescents under the age of 19 live with type 1 diabetes.
The International Diabetes Federation (IDF), the International Society for Pediatric and Adolescent Diabetes (ISPAD) and Sanofi initiated the Kids and Diabetes in Schools (KiDS) project in 2013.
The aim of the KiDS programme is to bring diabetes education to schools to fight diabetes-related stigma and promote healthy lifestyles to tackle the preventable risk factors for type 2 diabetes.
KiDS resources are a crucial component of the project. They have been developed with the expert input of an international, multi-disciplinary advisory committee and adapted to local languages, cultures and environments, to facilitate implementation worldwide.
KiDS was piloted in Sao Paulo (Brazil) and New Delhi (India), engaging 1,393 school staff and 38,000 students, with the help of local partners Associação de Diabetes Juvenil (ADJ), the Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI) and HRIDAY.
Following a positive evaluation, the KiDS Information Pack was translated into 18 languages and made available online to support global implementation.
There are currently two implementation models for KiDS. The first is structured and consists of the support, involvement or endorsement of policy makers, local NGOs and other partners. This results in regular sessions and educational events. Structured KiDS programmes are currently operating in schools across nine countries: Argentina, Brazil, Egypt, Hungary, India, Japan, Pakistan, Poland and the United Arab Emirates. The second model consists of ad-hoc sessions, which have been organised in over 45 countries to date.
Additional resources have been developed focused on the promotion of healthy lifestyles. These include an educational guide on nutrition and diabetes in schools and an interactive online quiz. Their content is aligned with WHO recommendations and the pedagogical methodology of “learning-by-playing”.
Supporting a safe and supportive school environment for people with diabetes
The vision of the KiDS project is to foster a school environment that creates a better understanding of diabetes and supports children with diabetes.
This is implemented by educational activities aimed at promoting healthy nutrition and exercise among the general public, driven by the school community.
- To foster a safe and supportive school environment for children with type 1 diabetes to enable them to manage their diabetes, and to prevent discrimination;
- To raise awareness on the prevention of type 2 diabetes and the benefits of healthy food choices and physical activity among school-age children.
- School students (age group 6-14 years)
- Teachers and other school staff (e.g. school nurses)
- Parents (including families with children living with diabetes)
- Health professionals (with focus at primary care level)
- Policymakers and Government Officials
- General Public (including media channels)
Global perspectives on diabetes in schools
- KiDS and diabetes in schools (KiDS) presented at Brussels conference
- Diabetes in the young, school performance and kids
- Protecting kids' rights: IDF and select partners launch Kids and Diabetes in Schools (KIDS) project in Brazil and India
- Chinnici D, Middlehurst A, Tandon N, et al. Improving the school experience of children with diabetes: Evaluation of the KiDS project. J Clin Transl Endocrinol. 2019; 15:70–75. Published 2018 Dec 4. doi:10.1016/j.jcte.2018.12.001.
- Bechara, GM, Castelo Branco, F, Rodrigues, AL, et al. “KiDS and Diabetes in Schools” project: Experience with an international educational intervention among parents and school professionals. Pediatr Diabetes. 2018; 19:756–760.
In 2018, the KiDS programme and its implementation in Poland was awarded with the Health Collaboration Award in the Prevention & Awareness Category by the European Federation of Pharmaceutical Industries and Associations (EFPIA).
On 26 August 2020, the KiDS programme in Goa, India was awarded with The Silver Award in the Health Impact Awareness Category at the 4th CSR Health Impact Awards 2020.