Sanofi holds charity campaign at Zhengda Foreign Language School
Sanofi's charity program "We Volunteer" has successfully held a "KiDS in China" special campaign at the Zhengda Foreign Language School, which was jointly organized by Shanghai Daily and the Shanghai Municipal Center for Health Promotion.
Hundreds of students fully engaged in formats such as cartoons, mini sit-coms, and gaming to share and learn about basic skin health.
Sanofi successfully mobilized over two dozen employees to devote their spare time to prepare and perform content suitable for schoolchildren.
A handbook was offered to the children, explaining skin problems, the basics of skin health, the mechanism of the immune system, and antibodies, as well as the latest advancements in treatment.
As the World Atopic Eczema Day falls on September 14, a series of public welfare activities were launched in over 42 cities, supported by Sanofi.
The series of charity events and public welfare initiatives call on all in society to push toward inclusion, empowerment, and cooperation to make a joint contribution toward the Healthy China Blueprint and the national program of action for children development.
The treatment and management of atopic dermatitis in adolescents has been a crucial part of the Healthy China 2030 initiative, and it is also in line with a national-level blueprint to safeguard the physical and mental health of children and young adolescents.
The most common skin symptoms among adolescents are dry, flaky skin, skin irritation during seasonal changes, and itching.
Dermatologists have been highlighting that early diagnosis and treatment of young patients is especially important to help with their studies and social interaction.
The prevalence of atopic dermatitis in children aged between one and seven years is 12.94 percent, while the prevalence in infants under one year is as high as 30.48 percent.
According to previous research, more than half of adolescents have suffered from skin-related diseases, and nearly 60 percent experienced sleeping disorders due to itching, which has an irreversible impact on their study life, and physical and mental development.
Wang Liuhui, director of the Department of Dermatology at the Children's Hospital of Fudan University, said that fortunately, atopic dermatitis can be alleviated and controlled through long-term standardized treatment, allowing patients to return to normal life.
However, symptoms that are seemingly mild and not urgent or fatal often become an excuse for many children or families to ignore and delay treatment.
The itching would not go away because of indifference and negligence and the lesions left during early years do not heal when children grow up.
As the new school semester begins, there has been an increase in the number of pediatric atopic dermatitis patients due to the cooler temperatures and dryness since September. Coupled with school work pressure, disease control has not been ideal for some patients and this could become a disturbing situation for the whole family, Wang said.
More than two dozen Sanofi volunteers went out of their way to play different roles in the mini sit-coms and in group discussions with the children.
They played different parts to show the mechanism of human antibodies, how the immune system works, and how innovative drugs help inhibit the inflammatory cytokines to curb immune system over-reaction.
Teddy Li, a medical affairs executive from Sanofi, told Shanghai Daily that many of his colleagues have a natural calling to reach out to communities to offer health-related knowledge and information for children and adults alike.
"Raising awareness is just the first step, and then they would start to pay more attention to the issue and disturbance they might encounter in everyday life.
"From the group discussion period, I've learned some of them have similar symptoms but they still have limited ways to talk about the issues even though it's a disturbing situation for them," he said.
Party Chief and Principal of the Zhengda Foreign Language Elementary School Tu Caiying said: "Sanofi's volunteer work and charity program fits well with our education concept and it also benefits the children to learn about scientific knowledge through the sit-com performance.
"It can allow students to have more understanding about the disease and maybe patients around them, and this could also raise their interest in scientific research in the future," she said.