Current public health programs in the Darjeeling District are targeted towards addressing the health needs of
children ages 0-6 years and adolescents in secondary schools. However, the health challenges threatening the
learning and development of school-aged children are largely unaddressed. Broadleaf HEA believes that
comprehensive school health programs are the key to addressing the health and developmental challenges faced by
Broadleaf is currently developing and piloting CHHIP - an innovative model for comprehensive school health
adapted to local needs of rural primary schools in the Darjeeling District.
The Government of India recognizes school health programs as a priority; however, successful implementation and
scale has been hindered by human resource constraints. This is particularly true in remote, rural regions such as the
Darjeeling Hills. CHHIP is an approach to the problem of how to best organize school health services. Utilizing an
alternative human resource delivery model - all interventions are delivered through community level field workers
(School Health Activists).
Through the School Health Activists (SHAs), CHHIP strives to improve the health and education status of targeted
children through the delivery of health education, primary health services, an efficient referral network to
professional services, and an improved school health environment.
During its pilot phase, CHHIP has made considerable gains in achieving its objectives of improving the overall learning environment, providing early intervention for health issues, and equipping children with the health knowledge and critical life-skills necessary to take control of their personal development and improve the health of their communities as agents of change.