UNESCO Chair Global Health and Education Health Education, Prevention, Health Promotion, Children and Young People

4th IAAH MENA Region Adolescent Health Conference – contributions UNESCO Chair

The 4th IAAH (International Association for Adolescent Health) MENA (Middle East and North Africa) Region Adolescent Health Conference, organized by the Arab Coalition for Adolescent Health & Medicine (ACAHM), was held from 1-3 December 2021 in Hurghada, Egypt. The conference was held under the patronage of the League of Arab States and attended by 190 participants from 38 countries and 15 International and Regional organizations.


The main theme of the conference was: “Adolescent Care, Leaving No One Behind”. The conference aimed to break the silence around the unmet needs of the large and increasing group of disadvantaged adolescents in the Middle East and North Africa region who are chronically ill or disabled, belong to an ethnic minority, live in a disadvantaged socio-economic environment or are displaced due to political violence. It also emphasized that investing in the health, development and well-being of adolescents in general is the most cost-effective investment a nation can make for the future.

UNESCO Chair contributions

Didier Jourdan gave a keynote speech on the theme: Supporting every community and every school to become a foundation for healthy lives. He addressed the following five ideas:

  1. Education and Health are mutually intertwined
  2. Learning for Health and Well-being
  3. Creating a safe, inclusive and healthy learning environment
  4. Political and strategic levers for change
  5. Building school’s capacity to become a foundation for healthy lives

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Didier Jourdan, MinChien Tsai and Silvia de Ruiter led a plenary workshop on Genuine Participation of adolescents. During the workshop they shared why genuine participation is critical for the success of health interventions, provided country examples and introduced the roadmap for a global collaboration “nothing about them, without them”.

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More information: Conference website