Young people are invited to take part in a consultation looking at noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) in the under-30 demographic across the Commonwealth.
The WHO reports that there are 40 million deaths a year associated with NCDs (preventable, health-related conditions such as cardiovascular disease, cancer, obesity and diabetes), with one quarter of these deaths occurring in Commonwealth Countries. It predicts this number will increase to 55 million a year by 2030 if no action is taken.
Currently, premature deaths (in those aged 30–69), linked to these preventable conditions make up half of all deaths in Commonwealth regions. The main risk factors contributing to NCDs include unhealthy diets, physical inactivity, tobacco use, and alcohol misuse.
The Commonwealth Secretariat is in the process of developing a Commonwealth-wide NCD strategy to tackle the issue, and break the chain between poor diet and health, a lack of exercise and early death. Young people’s feedback is now sought to better understand how youths are affected and the risk factors this demographic faces. It will be implemented into the strategy which will be presented to Commonwealth countries and used to improve lives globally.
Dr Janneth Mghamba, Health Adviser for the Commonwealth Secretariat, said:
“We want to involve young people in every stage of the development of this strategy – in the assessment of need, in its creation and in its implementation.
“Literature has shown that premature deaths from NCDs can be preventable if we address the growing incidence of high-risk behaviours and diets.
“We strongly believe that young people can be the instrumental change that is needed in turning the tide on NCDs. Through helping to spread knowledge and empowering younger generations to build healthy lifestyles and address inactivity, their input is vital to making NCDs a problem of the past.”
Those aged 15-29 are invited to take part in a short questionnaire where they can submit their insights and experiences with NCDs. These will be collated and used in the upcoming NCD strategy.
The questionnaire focuses on three main areas, namely physical activity, diet, and mental health and well-being. Respondents will also be entered into a prize draw to win one of two £50 Amazon vouchers after completion of the survey.
Your involvement can be tailored to your level of capacity and will provide learning and development opportunities along the way.
The survey will close on 15 November, 2022.
- Amy Coles Communications Officer, Communications Division, Commonwealth Secretariat