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  UNDP > UNDP News > in Belarus

Health Saving Information Becomes Comprehensible

18 January, 2008 - A new joint project of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) entitled “Family Health” was launched in Belarus. The official presentation of the project took place yesterday in Stolin (Brest region) on the premises of the district hospital.

The main objective of the two-year project is to improve health of people living in the Chernobyl affected areas of the Stolin district by raising the awareness of the target groups about the issues of healthy maternity, fatherhood, upbringing and development of children as well as safe living in the affected territories. The target groups comprise healthcare experts, pregnant and childbearing age women, nursing mothers, future fathers, high school teachers and students.

“The health issue is at the top of the list of many problems and misfortunes, which were brought to the Belarusian land by the Chernobyl catastrophe,” noted Genrikh Tarasevich, Deputy Head of the scientific support and international cooperation desk of the Department for mitigation of the consequences of the Chernobyl disaster of the Ministry of Emergencies of Belarus (the project implementing agency). In his words, the new joint project is aimed at securing healthy maternity and childhood, which is the state’s priority.

The project envisages opening and equipping of a center of mother and child health in Stolin, development of methodological and information materials, creation of two thematic websites and a series of videos on the issues of healthy maternity, fatherhood and childhood, teaching the skills of safe living in the areas polluted with radionuclides, and arranging topical training for healthcare professionals and teachers.

The project presentation was accompanied by opening of a consultative-information center “Dialogue” created on the premises of the Stolin central district hospital with the support of the “Family Health” project. The centre is aimed to provide advisory assistance to new mothers and their families on healthy maternity, parenting and developing a healthy child. Young people will have an opportunity to consult the center specialists – obstetrician, urologist, narcologist and psychologist about the issues of reproductive health and relations with the family and friends.

For reference: According to statistical data, about 60 per cent of women of reproductive age (18-40 years) and over 80 per cent of pregnant women living in the Stolin district have one or another pathology. As a result, babies born completely healthy are a rarity. Almost 90 per cent of newborns are put into the second or the third health groups. The low level of knowledge and lack of practical radiation safety skills cause unwarranted irradiation. That is why raising the level of knowledge and responsibility of young people for reproductive health and radiation safety is very important.

For more information please refer to Victoria Drobyshevskaya, Project Manager, ph. 8-029-658-51-88, or Vladislav Khilkevich, UNDP Communications Associate, ph. in Minsk 227-38-17, e-mail:

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