CHRC and ENSP-NOVA researcher is PI of European project in science education on Public Health challenges
PAFSE “Partnerships for Science Education” has the National School of Public Health –of NOVA University of Lisbon as coordinating entity of the project, leaded by Prof. and researcher Carolina Santos from ENSP-NOVA and at CHRC. The European Commission (EC) allocated €1.46M to fund the project. PAFSE involves multiple national and international consortium members and strategic partnerships, to create a multidisciplinary network with the aim of enriching science education on Public Health challenges, with science players (universities, research centres, laboratories) and all interested actors (companies, civil society organizations, government institutes, NGOs, start-ups, etc.).
“PAFSE "Partnerships for Science Education" focuses on establishing partnerships between schools, universities, research centres, laboratories, companies, associations, civil society representatives, among other agents, involving them in endeavours to improve education in the STEM field (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics), and contribute to public health. The project will involve the entire school community and partners, supporting them in actions to reduce the risks of communicable diseases and epidemics, as well as other problems like childhood obesity, zoonoses, diabetes, road accidents or health inequities. “
“The concern with the spread of infectious diseases and zoonoses, i.e., diseases that jump from animals to humans, is one of the questions addressed not only by the scientific community, but also by the population in general. This was the motivation for the development of the PAFSE project, in which researchers from five Portuguese institutions are involved: NOVA University of Lisbon – National School of Public Health (project leader), Institute of Systems and Computer Engineering, Technology and Science, University of Minho, Higher Institute of Engineering of Lisbon and Portuguese Association for the Prevention of Road Accidents.”
In order to carry out this project, PAFSE is working with the General Directorate for Education, to identify schools interested in joining the project, whose target are the students of 7th, 8th and 9th grade, to promote health literacy in Science, Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry and ICT classes, but it doesn't stop there.
“The project also includes activities in science clubs and community environments, with the support of partners, using innovative learning environments to generate interest among younger people (in terms of STEM curricula and jobs), thus making them ambassadors of public health in their communities.”
PAFSE wants to reach 3000 students, belonging to 4 different countries such as Portugal, Cyprus, Greece and Poland, embracing more than 1000 schools that can benefit from PAFSE.
The international members of the consortium are Computer Technology Institute and Press “Diophantus” (Greece), Ioannina University (Greece), University of Cyprus (Cyprus) and AMU University (Poland). PAFSE was approved by the European Commission' Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme.