IFRC-IFPMA 4 Healthy Habits is an innovative partnership which provides information and tools to change behaviours, promote healthy lifestyles in communities around the world and ultimately to reduce the rise of NCDs.
- Improve health status of targeted individuals and communities;
- Go beyond awareness-raising campaigns by prompting behavioural change;
- Develop, pilot, conduct and scale-up the implementation of healthy lifestyle modules and tools;
- Jointly advocate for NCD prevention and control at both the global and regional level.
Non-communicable diseases (NCDs) are the leading cause of death and illness worldwide. Changes in lifestyle – such as unhealthy diet, tobacco use, and insufficient physical activity – have led to a rising proportion of global deaths accounted for by NCDs. Four types of NCDs – cardiovascular diseases, cancers, diabetes and chronic respiratory diseases – kill 3 in 5 people in the world, with 80% of these deaths occurring in low- and middle-income countries.
It is estimated, however, that half of the deaths caused by NCDs are preventable. Prevention can be achieved through increased health literacy, awareness and simple behavioural changes aimed at reducing common risk factors.
Building on the IFRC’s long history of health promotion within communities by using simple tools adapted to the local context, the IFRC-IFPMA 4HealthyHabits partnership developed a module on healthy lifestyle guidelines and NCD control and prevention.
In a bid to reduce risk factors from community members’ lifestyles, the module incorporates behaviour change methods for different target groups to meet the needs of different age groups. These tools are easy-to-use, interactive and available in different languages. They are used by volunteers to empower their communities to undertake the required behaviour changes for a healthier lifestyle, focusing on key five steps: knowledge, approval, intention, practice and advocacy. Scoring tools are part of the guidelines to help the volunteers and community members to better understand their health status and get targeted support. These tools are available in paper-based, online and mHealth versions.
The IFRC is making the toolkit available to approximately 3 million people worldwide through a 15million-strong volunteer network in 189 countries.
Successful prevention of NCDs largely depends on encouraging people to lead healthy lifestyles. Community volunteers equipped with the practical, easy-to-use tools can help reduce the risk factors that give rise to NCDs. Volunteers play an essential role in bridging the last mile between access to healthcare and communities.
3 in 5
people are killed by NCDs worldwide
16 million people die
prematurely before their 70s from NCDs
4 out of 5
of these deaths occur in develop