Since the incident of World Health Day in 1950, global health challenges have been highlighted and access to healthcare has been championed by health advocates all over the world as a way of improving the health of citizens the world over.

World Health Day is observed annually on 7 April, under the auspices of the World Health Organization (WHO) as well as many health organization, health authorities and governments around the world. The 2022 theme: “Our Plane, our Health” is to demonstrate the important relationship between climate change, other planetary issues and “our own health”.

This World Health Day, the WHO inspires each one of us to advocate for cleaner air, smarter cities and good overall health. The WHO estimates that more than 13 million deaths around the world each year are due to avoidable environmental causes and this include climate change as one of the biggest health threats facing humanity.

On this day you can volunteer at your local charities and organizations. You can also become a blood or bone marrow donor. But overall, take measures to stay healthy and be courteous to your medical staff.

The day is all about creating awareness for the health issues of the needy and the less fortunate in poor regions around the world, as well as reminding us to be grateful for our health and to better take care of ourselves.

Outdoor activities like hiking and bicycling are organized, as well as charity drives and fundraisers. Mental health is often most neglected and, owing to our stressful lifestyles, it’s very important nowadays. So mediation and therapy are greatly encouraged. Of course, you are what you eat, so the meals of the day and restaurant promotions are all about maintaining a balanced diet.

Wangari Maathai wrote in her book, Replenishing the Earth, “I have come to realize that the physical destruction of the earth extends to humanity, too. If we live in an environment that’s wounded where the water is polluted, the air is filled with soot and fumes, the food is contaminated with heavy metals and plastic residues, or the soil is practically dust it hurts us, chipping away at our health and creating injuries at a physical, psychological and spiritual level. In degrading the environment, therefore, we degrade ourselves and all humankind.”

In the process of helping the earth to heal, we help ourselves. If we see the earth bleeding from the loss of topsoil, biodiversity, or drought and desertification, and if we help reclaim or save what is lost the planet will help us in our self-healing and indeed survival.

Karabelo Moncho

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