This article discusses the findings from a case study focusing on processes involving pupils to bring about health-promotion changes. The study is related to an EU intervention project aiming to promote health and well-being among children (4–16 years). Qualitative research was carried out in a school in the Netherlands. Data sources include project documents, interviews, and observations. Thematic analysis was carried out combining the different data sources. The case study shows that, if given sufficient guidance, children can act as agents of health-promoting changes. The main arena for youth influence was the pupil council. Pupils were meaningfully involved in two actions, which targeted road safety around the school and a playground for a disadvantaged community near the school. A clear framework was provided, which delineated the participation room for pupils at every stage. The main goal of participation was construed as the development of students' capacities to actualize their ideas. The pupils were positive about their involvement. Their experience with active participation seems to have empowered them, giving them the feeling of ownership, efficacy, and achievement in working with "real-life" problems.
Response to this Article
Case Study of a Participatory Health-Promotion Intervention in School.
Democracy and Education,
(1), Article 4.
Available at: http://democracyeducationjournal.org/home/vol20/iss1/4