Children in Bucks primary schools join with children from Uganda to support World Antibiotic Awareness Week.

A team of pharmacists and a Microbiologist from Buckinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust have helped set up a twinning relationship between two Bucks primary schools and schools in Uganda, Africa, as World Antibiotic Awareness Week begins today (November 18).

The children will be encouraged to write to each other to learn about life in a different country, discover cultural differences and understand the importance of good antibiotic guardianship.

Wingrave Church of England Primary school and Longwick Church of England Primary school have set up a ‘twinning’ system with children at St Theresa’s school in Entebbe and Kawotto Saviour’s Primary School.

Last year, pharmacists and a microbiologist from the Trust invited local schools to take part in a poster competition to help raise awareness about the importance of using antibiotics appropriately and help prevent their indiscriminate use.

This unique opportunity to reach out to children in Uganda follows trips made to Uganda by a team of pharmacists from the Trust in September, in collaboration with a team from Nottingham Trent University, as part of a UK government development initiative funded by the Fleming Fund and UK Aid.

Consultant Microbiologist and Antimicrobial Stewardship Lead for the Trust, Dr Jean O’Driscoll, said: “I was part of the team that visited the schools in Uganda in September, where we discussed antibiotic resistance, highlighted the importance of handwashing, and launched the competition for World Antibiotic Awareness Week.

“I showed the children posters and videos that had been created by children in Bucks and the idea just grew from there.

“I hope this will be the start of a fruitful collaboration.”

The first batch of 30 letters from the children at Wingrave school are on their way to St Theresa’s school in Entebbe and replies from new friends in Africa are eagerly awaited.

Teacher from the school, Janet Lee, said: “My children are incredibly excited to be writing to a Ugandan penpal - incredibly excited indeed!

“We have a display up in our class that is totally dedicated to St. Theresa's School.”