Ontario Students Bug Out!

    Canada's first illness prevention program created by the Canadian Red
    Cross and the Ministry of Health gives Ontario students facts on germs

    TORONTO, March 3 /CNW Telbec/ - Being informed is the best way to prevent
disease transmission, especially in our schools, according to the Canadian Red
Cross and the Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care who launched a new
school-based program aimed at helping children stay healthy through a better
understanding of germs and how to prevent their spread.
    Developed by the Canadian Red Cross in partnership with the Ministry of
Health and Long-Term Care, Bug Out! Get the Facts on Germs is the first
program of its kind in Canada and offers free downloadable resources ideal for
teachers and families.
    "This program makes it easy for young children to understand how they can
play a part in protecting themselves and their families," said Don Shopshire,
national director of disaster management with the Canadian Red Cross."
    The program targets different age groups through a format that
complements the Ontario school curriculum. Materials can be downloaded from
the Red Cross web site and include facilitator's guides, participant activity
booklets and a family guide.
    "We are happy to work with the Canadian Red Cross to develop Canada's
first-ever prevention of disease transmission educational program for
school-aged children," said George Smitherman, Deputy Premier and Minister of
Health and Long-Term Care. "This program reaffirms our commitment to emergency
preparedness as well as supporting the health and well-being of Ontario's
children and families."
    "Learning about proper hand-washing is an important part of illness
prevention," said Kathleen Wynne, Minister of Education. "It's great to see so
many students learning hands-on how to stay healthy and for their teachers and
families to be able to access this important resource."

    Topics covered through age-appropriate discussion and interactive
sessions include:

    - understanding germs and how they spread
    - proper hand-washing
    - cough and sneeze etiquette

    The Canadian Red Cross was well positioned to develop this program based
on its existing expertise in educational resources including Expect the
Unexpected, a program that helps children and families prepare for
    For more information or to download the Bug Out! Get the Facts on Germs
resources, visit www.redcross.ca/bugout. The materials will also be available
at www.health.gov.on.ca/emergency.

    The Canadian Red Cross is a member of the International Red Cross and Red
Crescent Movement, which includes the International Federation of Red Cross
and Red Crescent Societies, the International Committee of the Red Cross and
186 national Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies. Its mission is to improve
the lives of vulnerable people by mobilizing the power of humanity in Canada
and around the world.

For further information:

For further information: Tanya Elliott, Canadian Red Cross, Cell: (905)

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