January 17. 2017
A new year brings many new exciting things! For the Health and Wellness Center (H&W), it means we have 128 new students to care for and watch grow over the next 4 years! It is such a joy to watch our students thrive during their time here. Year after year, we watch kids grow taller and wiser. We have no doubt our new students will be no exception.
As each grade enters ASYV, the Health and Wellness Center does a thorough physical and mental evaluation. This year, we were lucky enough through our partnership with Boston Children’s Hospital to have two nurses, Kathryn Barrandon and Michele Morin, from America join us during our screening week. The visiting nursed first joined us at ASYV last July and have been consulting with the H&W department ever since. They returned this January for ten days to work along-side our team. They brought over some great evaluation tools that we were able to implement in this year’s screening.
Over the course of six days, each student was evaluated and entered into our new Health and Wellness database, which tracks each student over the next 4 years. Kathryn and Michele took vital signs, while two local Rwandan doctors performed a physical and gathered each student’s medical history. Simultaneously, students spoke with our psychosocial workers to get a complete psychological history and evaluation. At ASYV, we emphasize a holistic approach to healing our students.
The Health and Wellness team isn’t just for the students! We are also dedicated to the care and professional development of our staff members. Boston Children’s Hospital generously donated 36 first aid kits for our team, one for each family home and major meeting areas in the village. Over the past ten days, various interns and staff members were given first aid training. A select group of staff were even trained to teach others first aid. We plan on every student having basic first aid knowledge by the end of first term.
We are working to empower our students to be their own health advocates. Success starts when you feel well. We want our student’s bodies and minds ready to take advantage of every opportunity ASYV has to offer!
Submitted by Taylor Landay, Village Fellow 2017