JIS News

The Ministry of Health has embarked on a Cheerleading Programme, geared at raising the level of health awareness and encouraging healthy lifestyle practices among adolescents between 12 and 19 years of age in the nation’s high schools.
To this end, a North East Regional Health Cheerleading Competition will take place on Thursday, February 24 at the St. John’s Anglican Church Hall in Ocho Rios.
Marion Scott, Communications Officer at the Ministry of Health told JIS News that the healthy lifestyle Cheerleading Programme began two years ago and has been a success since its inception.
“Students gravitate towards the programme because it presents physical activity and health awareness in an exciting way. It also provides an alternative to traditional sporting activities, while enhancing personal development,” Miss Scott said.
She pointed out that the North East Region, comprising Portland, St. Mary and St. Ann would be showcasing the talents of four teams in the competition.
“The schools that will be competing are Port Antonio High, Annotto Bay High, Brimmervale High and Aaubuthnot Gallimore High,” she said.
Miss Scott explained that the Ministry of Health had adopted a more holistic approach to the programme, and that participating schools were required to form a Healthy Lifestyle/Cheerleading Club so that members could tackle health issues, such as early sexual activity, drug usage, unhealthy eating habits, conflict resolution and environmental concerns.
“Club members are expected to become role models, helping other students to appreciate their health and advising them on how to protect it,” she said.
Miss Scott said she was appealing to the schools across the nation to become more involved in the programme, as this would encourage students to take part in creative activities as well as health initiatives.

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