The Life Education program is international, but designed to support and complement Finnish school education.
The Life Education program operates in 14 countries and engages 4 million children every year. The founder of the program in Finland was the late Professori Niilo Hallman. In Finland the program was started in 2001. Approximately 24,000 Finnish children receive education in 120 primary schools and kindergartens in 20 regions every year.
International history of the program
The Life Education program was developed in the 1960's in Australia. From Australia the program was brought to England with the support of i.e. Prince Charles. Today the Life Education program in provided in England by the Coram Foundation established in 1739. Operational centres are located in different regions around the country, and approximately 100 Mobile Learning Centres are used. Approximately 800 000 British children participate in the Life Education program every year. In England i.e. Barclays Bank has been one of the program's driving forces for several years, as well as the Rotary movement and Inner Wheel.
The need of a health education program in Finland
Most Finnish children are well and healthy. Although children’s health has developed positively, the experience of health has not changed in a positive direction. One in ten school-age children has a medically diagnosed injury or illness that requires treatment. In recent decades, the range of children’s illnesses has changed. In particular, overweight, asthma, allergies and depression have increased significantly. With childhood overweight, type 2 diabetes has also become more common in children. Preventive and planned health and substance abuse education is increasingly needed in Finland. Healthy lifestyles are learned in early childhood.