A global network  –  ReAct Latin America

Alforja Educativa

The Alforja Educativa (The Educational Knapsack) is an innovative didactic tool for the teaching and learning process related to the promotion and care of health. The Alforja encourages experiential learning of the sciences, the development of ecological awareness and a sense of interconnection with nature.

Using its materials, teachers and facilitators can address the problem of antibiotic resistance and educate the youth on the world of microorganisms in humans and the planet from a One Health perspective.


Children engaging in the Alforja Initative.

Based on the notion that children play an active and leading role in the meaningful construction of learning, the Alforja Educativa encourages children to discover, learn and communicate about health related topics with playful and artistic methods. In Latin America, the educational program ‘Alforja Educativa’ has engaged more than 3500 children and 450 teachers from over 150 elementary schools across the region.

Children in Equador learning about microbes.

The origin of the Alforja Educativa

The Alforja Educativa project originated in the city of Cuenca, Ecuador, for the promotion of health in the educational context of school curriculums and community spaces. With support from Child to Child and the Faculty of Medical Sciences of the University of Cuenca, the training program for elementary school teachers on antibiotic resistance and use of antibiotics was created in 2012.

The initiative was executed within the framework of microbial ecology, the Child to Child methodology and the ancestral Cuencan learnings of “Sumak Kawsay” – which recognizes the harmony and interconnectedness between all living things and nature.

Reading of the Alforja Educativa book.

The Educational Knapsack Material

The “Educational Knapsack – Student Health and the Microbial World” is a rich and diverse set of teaching guides that are the result of four years of hard work that involved educators, artists, communication specialists as well as health professionals and researchers from Ecuador and many other countries.

The training module was developed to feature educational material and practical learning tools to support the work of school teachers and health promoters in classrooms, learning spaces, and communities to disseminate and share knowledge and propose actions to tackle the issue of antibiotic resistance.

The Alforja is an opportunity to raise awareness, educate, learn, play, feel tenderness, and empower oneself about the health of everyone.

– Silvina Alessio, School health and microbial world – Coordinator for ReAct Latin America

Alforja in Kenya

ReAct Africa is currently implementing a pilot project that uses the English version of the Alforja Educativa. The project activities include adaptation of the Alforja Educativa to the Kenyan context and piloting of the adapted Alforja in selected schools in Siaya and Kisumu counties in Kenya.

Children from Migosi and Orongo Primary schools in the exhibition Hall in Migosi

Child-to-Child methodology

The project is developed through the Child-to-Child Methodology, meaning that children become multipliers of messages and knowledge with their peers, families, and communities. The child-to child methodology encourages children to actively participate in the health related issues that affect them and become influential agents of change in their own families, schools and communities.

Furthermore, the Child to Child methodology empowers children to use their own knowledge to promote community led health and development solutions. Aside from promoting health, the Child to Child methodology develops children’s communication skills and problem solving abilities


The Alforja Educativa has engaged:

  • 450 teachers
  • 150 elementary schools
  • 700 university students
  • 30 university professors
  • 50 civil society organizations
  • 2 teacher trade union organizations


Find the educational resource “Educational Knapsack – Student Health and the Microbial World”.

Learn more about the Alforja in Kenya

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