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Navigating Transitions: Current Global Challenges in School-Age and Adolescent Health

Pupils learning in the computer room at the Inspirations Primary School, Mombasa, Kenya.
Pupils learning in the computer room at the Inspirations Primary School, Mombasa, Kenya.

With Gairdner and The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids), IDRC is hosting a two-day Gairdner Global Perspectives Panel event on “Navigating Transitions.” Our speakers will delve into the challenges, interventions and opportunities for school-age and adolescent well-being. 

Keynotes will be provided by David Ross, Gita Sen, Purnima Menon and Venkatraman Chandra-Mouli. 

May 10

Welcome remarks: Dr. Janet Rossant (Gairdner Foundation) and Dr. Dominique Charron (IDRC) 

Session 1: State of the Field 
9:00–10:00 am 

CHAIR: Dr. Zulfiqar Bhutta, 2022 John Dirks Canada Gairdner Global Health Laureate; Chief, Centre for Global Child Health, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, ON, Canada 

Global adolescent health and well-being 
Prof. David Ross, Professor Extraordinary in Epidemiology and Public Health, Institute for Life Course Health Research, Stellenbosch University, Stellenbosch, South Africa 

Impact of COVID-19 pandemic and response in South Asia 
Dr. Aatekah Owais, PhD, MPH, Research Associate, SickKids’ Centre for Global Child Health, Toronto, ON, Canada 

Sub-Saharan Africa and the future of adolescent health and well-being 
Dr. Alex Ezeh, Dornsife Professor of Global Health, Dornsife School of Public Health, Drexel University, Philadelphia, PA, USA 

Session 2: Risks and Challenges 
10:00–11:00 am 

CHAIR: Dr. Sabine Kleinert, Senior Executive Editor, The Lancet, London, UK 

Gender Equality 
Prof. Gita Sen, Director and Distinguished Professor, Ramalingaswami Centre on Equity and Social Determinants of Health (RCESDH), Public Health Foundation of India, Bangalore, India 

FOXY & SMASH: Arts-based sexual and mental health education with Indigenous and Northern youth 
Dr. Candice Lys, Executive Director, FOXY, Yellowknife, YT, Canada 

Adolescent health in humanitarian settings: Challenges, data gaps and lessons learned from the Middle East 
Hala Ghattas, PhD, Associate Research Professor and Director, Center for Research on Population and Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, American University of Beirut, Beirut, Lebanon 

May 11 

Session 3: Current Interventions 
9:00–10:00 am 

CHAIR: Dr. Tina-Marie Assi, Director, Global Health Innovation, Grand Challenges Canada 

Nourishing adolescents and young people in South Asia: Insights from the Lancet Series on Adolescent Nutrition (2021) 
Dr. Purnima Menon, Senior Research Fellow, IFPRI/CGIAR, New Delhi, India 

A global perspective on child and youth mental health 
Dr. Peter Szatmari, MD, FRCP, Department of Psychiatry, Hospital for Sick Children; Director, Cundill Centre for Child and Youth Depression, Centre for Addiction and Mental Health; Professor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada 

Youth reintegration after trauma 
Mercedes Castañeda, Co-Founder, Reinserta Un Mexicano AC, Mexico City, Mexico 

Session 4: Strategies for the Future 
10:00–11:00 am 

CHAIR: Dr. Stan Zlotkin, Chief, Centre for Global Child Health, The Hospital for Sick Children, Toronto, ON, Canada 

Progress on adolescent sexual and reproductive health and rights. Which groups are being left out, why and what can be done about it? 
Dr. Venkatraman Chandra-Mouli, Adolescent Sexual and Reproductive Health, Department of Sexual and Reproductive Health and Research, WHO, Geneva, Switzerland 

Climate change and youth wellbeing: Lessons learned from water insecurity and well-being research with refugee youth in a humanitarian context in Uganda 
Dr. Carmen Logie, PhD, Canada Research Chair in Global Health Equity and Social Justice with Marginalized Populations Associate Professor, Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work, University of Toronto, Toronto, ON, Canada 

Healthy Life Trajectories Initiative (HeLTI) in South Africa 
Prof. Shane Norris, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa 

Closing remarks: Dr. John Dusabe-Richards (IDRC) and Dr. Janet Rossant (Gairdner Foundation)