To improve health in the society and influence people to change their health behaviour, the first step for an educator would be to create awareness to the public. In a school setting, a teacher would have to start with the highest office to influence the development of health awareness to the students. After creating awareness to the entire school community, the second step would be to develop a plan to change the health behaviour of the members of the community.
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The plan would be determined by the resources available for the school. I would develop priorities in dealing with health issue and promote programs to tackle the most pressing health issues in the community. My approach to improve health in the school setting would entail the inclusion of the students in developing the programs, and providing regular reports to the entire community about the progress in the programs. Leading by example would form the core of my strategy in influencing the students to become advocates of preventive health behaviours. In my approach toward promoting public health, the implementation process would include constant communication with the stakeholders, who would include other members of the teaching staff, and the influential student leaders. My health promotion plan would be pioneered by the students (Parsons & Stears, 2001).
Health promotion in the school setting and the community at large has to incorporate the diffusion of innovation theory to attain high levels of success. The first step toward influencing the community to take part in health promotion would be to identify with the resources available toward the same. As a teacher, using students to influence their parents to assume positive health behaviour is a viable approach. Developing a social system with health awareness would have to include students, their parents, and other members of the society. To achieve this, I would have to evaluate the social structures in the community and identify with the strengths of its members.
This would help in the implementation of my innovative strategy to promote health in the school and in the community. The strategy would be based on the provision of moral support to the students and their family members to engage in individual efforts to promote their health (Nutbeam & Harris, 2004). My ultimate goal in the process would be to influence the society to achieve mental, social, and physical wellness through a community-based health promotion program. My role in the program would be to mediate between the individuals and the relevant authorities. I would actively engage the healthcare system in promoting preventive health care in the community, and I would influence the members of the community to take control of their individual health (Simovska, 2004).
My approach to health promotion would work on the principles of the health-promoting school model. I would incorporate health education in the formal education for the students to empower them with the required knowledge about health behaviours. I would also influence the management function in the school to develop a social climate that promotes healthy lifestyles for the students and the staff members (Leger & Nutbeam, 2000).
Leading by example would be one of my values, and I would urge the management to develop school policies that compel the entire community in the school to take control of their health. I would also invite parents to health promotion seminars to educate them about healthy lifestyles. I would be in the limelight of the development of health promotion strategies in the schools as well as in the implementation process (Booth & Samdal, 1997).
My health promotion model would be enshrined in the health belief model. The model helps in the development of a different perception of health issues in a society, and it would help in developing my approach to promote positive health behaviours among the students and the entire school community (Mukoma & Flisher, 2004). Perception is the core principle in the health belief model. One has to influence the target population to share the sentiments about their mutual susceptibility to the health issues present in their society (St Leger, 2000).
A health educator must influence the students to believe that they are mutually at risk of facing the health issues common to their society. They must also be lured into believing that taking preventive measures against the health issues would reduce their risks of facing the health issues. As a health promoter, I would also ensure that there is awareness among the students and the rest of the community that taking the recommended actions would lower their risk levels significantly (Nutbeam & Harris, 2004).
The health belief model highlights the need for educators to develop teaching strategies that incorporate advocacy, mediation, and implementation of health promotion programs. For a teacher looking to influence students into observing healthy behaviour, the easiest way to actualize the same is through the integration of health lessons for the students. My strategy is to provide information about healthy living, and to challenge them to participate in physical activities aimed at boosting their health (Rowe, Stewart & Patterson, 2007).
Promoting health in the school community would entail the development of certain policies that would not only create a good environment for students and other members of the community, but also compel them to take part in regular physical activities. Physical activities help in promoting health by keeping the society fit. In most cases, fitness translates to health promotion because it boosts the immunity of the concerned parties. In the school setting, advocating for the development of policies that ensure the entire school community takes part in physical activities would be the best approach to promoting positive health behaviours (Brown, Eakin, Mummery & Trost, 2003).
I would promote the development of a community-based strategy to help students develop a preventive perception of the health issues facing the community. As a teacher, I will advocate for the development of a curriculum that includes health education to nurture students into health-aware adults. I believe that most of the people in the society that live unhealthy lives are victims of lack of education in the same; hence, my approach would include health education in school, and it would be extended to the community through the inclusion of parents and other members of the society in health seminar. I would also include some healthcare facilities in the delivery of preventive health care services within the school system as well as in the entire community (Parsons & Stears, 2001).
Difference between the approach and past approaches
My health promotion strategy would be distinguished from the past strategies by its holistic approach to help students, staff members, and the entire community to achieve healthier lifestyles. It would also be different from the past approaches because my main goal would be to empower the people to take control of their health behaviours through advocacy, mediation, and leading by example. Past approaches utilized distinct theories and models to promote health, but my approach would integrate various theories to provide a unique approach that involves the entire community in promoting healthy lifestyles. I would also invest in a teaching curriculum that includes health education in classes. I would strive to achieve autonomy in governing the project so as to use a selective plan to inform people in the community to assume positive health behaviours (St Leger & Young, 2009).
My approach would have both short-term and long-term goals. The short-term goal would be to influence the community to develop the urge to practice healthy lifestyles. The long-term goal would be to nurture students into adults with high levels of health awareness. My approach would be distinguished by its ability to influence the entire community to change their health behaviour.
While past strategies would only target specific members of the society, my approach would look into including the entire community into a health promotion program. The program would also include members of the health care system by welcoming them into the school to provide preventive health care lessons to the students and their parents in extension. I would strive to create a unique perception about health in the community, which would not only compel the people to embrace positive health behaviours, but also advocate for the beneficiaries of the program to offer advice to other people in the community. I would integrate community resources in the program for efficiency in reaching out to the entire community.
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