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Project of Medical School Varaždin:  "Glyphosate, Health At Stake"  Project of Medical School Varaždin: "Glyphosate, Health At Stake" Minimize

Glyphosate, Health At Stake
Project of Medical School Varaždin

    Participating Schools:  1. Medical School Varaždin
2. School for Nurses Mlinarska
3. Secondary school Braće Radić Kaštel Štafilić-Nehaj
Date:  March 15th 2018
Project Leaders (e-mail):  1. Nataša Vuković (natvuk@gmail.com), Medical School Varaždin
2. Đurđica Stanešić
School for Nurses Mlinarska, Zagreb
3. Marija Rapanić
Secondary school Braće Radić Kaštel Štafilić-Nehaj
Coordinators name and surname (e-mail):  1. Nataša Vuković (natvuk@gmail.com), Medical School Varaždin
2. Natalija Šnidarić
, School for Nurses Mlinarska
3. Petrana Pupić
Secondary school Braće Radić Kaštel Štafilić-Nehaj
Leader School:  Medical School Varaždin
1. Matea Hranić, Medical School Varaždin
2. Barbara Golubić
, Medical School Varaždin
3. Patricija Jozić
, School for Nurses Mlinarska
4. Valentina Gretić Sadiković
, School for Nurses Mlinarska
5. Ivana Zorotović
, Secondary school Braće Radić Kaštel Štafilić-Nehaj
6. Ana Debeljak
, Secondary school Braće Radić Kaštel Štafilić-Nehaj
Target Group: 
Secondary school students, 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, and 5th year students
Project Objectives: 
To investigate:
a) What is Glyphosate and why should it worry us?
b) How does Glyphosate affect the health of people and the biological diversity in the environment?
c) How is the use of Glyphosate and other food chemicals regulated by law?
d) Do alternative uses to Glyphosate exist?

To investigate how much students know about the presence of chemicals in food and the impact they have on our health.
To raise awareness about the harms of using glyphosate and other controversial dangerous chemicals we use on daily basis through food intake.
To improve team work, learn through fun, use IT.
To implement peer education.

To study literature and scientific articles about glyphosate and other chemicals in food and the impact they have on one's health and nature.
To collect data; why is glyphosate, despite its bad image in public, known as the “king of herbicides“ on the free market?
To visit Faculty of Pharmacy and Biochemistry and the scientist professor Valerije Vrček who deals with glyphosate, bisphenol, aspartame and other controversial chemicals.
To hold a lecture about this herbicide and other harmful chemicals, the impact they have on human health and what is being done regarding their ban in everyday consumption.
To interview the professor on the latest information on glyphosate and its current use in Croatia and Europe.
To create a survey on glyphosate and other chemicals present in our food, and the impact they have on our health; the impact glyphosate has on the biological diversity, human health, and the way chemical use is regulated by law.
To carry out the survey among the 1st and 4th grade students of both schools and process the data.
To educate (through workshops or lectures) the 4th grade students about chemicals in food and the impact they have on our health and the environment.
To raise awareness about the dangers of using glyphosate.
To make a leaflet containing warnings about harmful effects of glyphosate.
To improve students' communication and social skills.
To improve team work.

Collaborators:  Prof.dr.sc. Valerije Vrček, dipl.ing.med.biochem. a full professor at the Department of Organic Chemistry at the Faculty of Pharmacy and Biochemistry. 
Place of implementation:  Zagreb, Faculty of Pharmacy and Biochemistry, School for Nurses Mlinarska,
Medical School Varaždin.
Duration (phases):  March 2018 – February 2019
Creating a framework plan and project application – February/March 2018.
Literature overview and distribution of tasks among participating schools – March 2018.
Phase 1: literature overview, visiting the library of Andrija Stampar School of Public Health, visiting the Faculty of Pharmacy and Biochemistry.
First student exchange – April, May 2018.
Phase 2: creating the survey, conducting the survey, creating workshops/lectures for students.
Second exchange – September, October 2018.
Phase 3: creating the leaflet about the harmful effects of glyphosate and other common controversial chemicals.
Videoconference and/or the third student exchange - November, December 2018.
Phase 4: final activities: linking the project segments, agreeing on the project presentation and creating the project presentation - January 2019.
Expected Results:  Achievement of project goals.
Risk Factors:

Inability of student exchange plan due to finances.  

Synopsis of project   "Glyphosate, health at stake "  Synopsis of project "Glyphosate, health at stake " Minimize

   Glyphosate is a chemical compound from the phosphonate group. It is the biologically active component of some broad spectrum herbicides. Today it's the most commonly used agricultural chemical of all time, on which global agriculture is built upon. Glyphosate is used/thrown onto the soil in households, gardens, playgrounds, along roads and train tracks, in vineyards and fields of various crops.
  Glyphosate is also the most controversial chemical in the world.
  It has become a part of the food chain, it's present among plant and animal life, measurable in surface and groundwater, and a part of the world's population has measurable amounts of glyphosate and its degradation products (AMPA) in their urine.
   The international agency for cancer research of the World Health Organization (WHO) has concluded that glyphosate is "likely carcinogenic to humans". The study shows how herbicides containing glyphosate work as endocrine disruptors and thus significantly affect hormone secretion and our endocrine system, which can endanger the fertility of people.
Human health is not only endangered by glyphosate use. The European Food Safety Authority EFSA has discovered a long term danger for animals, including domestic animals such as cows and sheep. The German Environmental Agency has also discovered significant negative consequences for biodiversity because of pesticide usage in general, but especially glyphosate.
   Glyphosate does not target only weeds, but also the useful grassy area which has been treated with the aforementioned chemical.
   The permission for glyphosate usage in the European Union ends at the end of June 2018, and with the normal procedure the license was to be renewed for another 15 years. The routine permission got stuck because of the accumulated evidence of the harmful and carcinogenic properties of glyphosate. Renowned world toxicologists have turned to Vytenis Andriukaitis, the European Health Commissioner, with an open letter and complaints. The petition to ban glyphosate has been signed by nearly 1.5 million residents of the EU.
   We have chosen the topic, Glyphosate = health at stake because of its current relevance, the effect glyphosate has on human health, animal health and biodiversity; and getting to know the procedures of lawmaking in the European parliament and the effect of it on members of the European Union.


1.) Research:
a.) What is GLYPHOSATE and should we be concerned?
b.) How does glyphosate affect human health, animal health and biodiversity?
c.) How does law-making regulate the usage of glyphosate and other chemicals in food?
d.) Which are the alternatives to glyphosate usage?
Visiting the library of the school of national health „dr. Andrija Štampar“, searching through literature and the data base, access to scientific articles. Research, interpretation and organization of scientific facts/information. Analysis and synthesis of the gathered information.
Preparing an interview for a scientist who is working on this problem.
Organizing a visit to the Pharmaceutical-biochemical university and scientist prof. Valerije Vrćek who deals with the research of glyphosate, bisphenol, aspartame and other controversial chemicals.
Research the ways in which decisions are made in the European parliament.
2.) Research how much students know about the presence of chemicals in food and their effect on health. Compose a survey about the knowledge and position of students on the use of herbicides.
Administer the survey to grade 12 students of associate school.
3.) Raise awareness of the harmfulness of using glyphosate and other controversial chemicals which we consume daily in out food. Organize education (workshops and lectures) for grade 12 students on the topic of chemical in food and their effect on health and the environment. Coordinate the content of the education with the survey results.
Design a pamphlet with warnings about the harmfulness of glyphosate.
4.) Personal and social development, active citizenship Development of:
-organisational abilities
-scientific fact usage skills
-task performance responsibilities
-public appearance and public speaking skills
-a responsible relationship towards protecting the environment and its resources
Making conscious and responsible decisions.
Adopt a healthy lifestyle.
Gain knowledge and develop awareness of democratic principles and the process of decision making of the legal system of the Republic of Croatia and the European union.
Critically judge social phenomena.


   PROJECT PREPARATIONS  Registering the project. Dividing tasks between associate schools.
  1ST PHASE Literature overview, visiting the library of the School of national health dr. Andrija Štampar, visiting the FBF.
Tasks for the schools:
- Literature overview - all schools
FIRST EXCHANGE: joint visit to the library of the School of national health „dr. Andrija Štampar“.
Visit to the Pharmaceutical-Biochemical university.
Analysis of the gathered information.
Agreement on further steps.
  2ND PHASE Making the survey for the grade 12 students.
Conducting the survey in the grade 12 classes.
Data analysis.
Planning of education for the surveyed students. Making the joint preparations for the education.
All steps of the second phase are carried out by cooperation of the associate schools using IT technology: Skype, social media, Google drive, polycom camera.
  3RD PHASE Designing the pamphlet about the harmfulness of glyphosate and other common controversial chemicals.
Evaluation of the current work, planning of the final activities and method of presenting the project.
  4TH PHASE Conduct the education in the grade 12 classes.
Practicing the joint presentation of the project.

The topic/content of the project is related to the following class subjects: Biology, Sociology, Anatomy and physiology, Pathology, Biochemistry, Dietetic, Social and health related legislature and legal aspects of care, Methodology of health education, Hygiene - preventive medicine and Maternal healthcare.

Second exchange in the project "Glyphos - Health At Risk" in Kaštel Štafilić  Second exchange in the project "Glyphos - Health At Risk" in Kaštel Štafilić Minimize

Second exchange in project
"Glifozat – Health At Risk" in Kaštel Štafiliću
(March 1, 2019)


   Matea Hranić and Barbara Golubić, pupils from Medical School in Varaždin, accompanied by their mentor, professor Nataša Vuković started a journey to Kaštel Štafilić on Friday, March 1, 2019. The purpose of this long trip was to meet the students from High School “Braća Radić“, Kaštel Štafilić and to make final preparations for the project “Glypgosate- Health At Risk“ that the pupils will present at “E-medica“ Fair Trade this year in April.

    Pupils Ivana Zorotović and Ana Debeljak together with their mentor Marija Rapanić, coordinator, professor Petrana Pupić as well as the school principal Marija Kezele warmly welcomed the guests from Varaždin in Split. Together they went to Fair Gast (Catering and Technology) where they had the opportunity to see not only traditional products from various manufacturers but also modern and innovative ones. Furthermore, tasting was also available. They tried traditional prosciutto (smoked ham) as well as coffee from the modern machine.
   After they had taken refreshments, they had to return to Kaštel Štafilić to prepare for the project. Pupils had worked really hard before coming to Kaštela so they only had to practise giving the presentation. Whereas the pupils from Nurse school Mlinarska in Zagreb were unable to come to Kaštela, the girls cooperated through social networks. They also had some free time so the students and mentors exchanged experiences in sunny, weather in fresh, sea air. They continued socializing the whole evening and went afterwards to the school`s dormitory to have their well-deserved rest.

   On March 2 after a good night`s sleep, the pupils continued practising the presentation, followed by a tour around their school. The tour included the school, school`s greenhouse where different types of plants can be seen, from citrus fruits to swiss chard or lavander to olives. After the tour they went for a walk by the sea enjoying the good company. After lunch, the pupils from Medical school Varaždin and their mentor had to pack their bags and go to Split. Professor Petrana Pupić showed them around the city of Split, they saw Diocletian`s palace and Marko Marulić`s statue and then it was time to say goodbye.

   Tired but satisfied pupils and their mentor returned to Varaždin late at night. The project has shown that the purpose of spending time together is not just research and work but making new friends and development of new ideas, as well.

Barbara Golubić i Matea Hranić


The first students exchange in project "Glyphosate - health at stake" (October 28th, 2018)  The first students exchange in project "Glyphosate - health at stake" (October 28th, 2018) Minimize

The first students exchange within project "Glyphosate - health at stake"


    The first students exchange within E - Medica project was realized on friday, October 28th, 2018, with subject "Glyphosate - health at stake". Exchange was organised by Medical school Varaždin in cooperation with doctor Valerio Vrček, regular professor of Faculty of Pharmacy and Biochemistry and School for Nurses Mlinarska.

   Students with their mentors first attended the lecture of prof. dr. Valerio Vrček, dipl. eng. med. of biochemistry, on FPB in Zagreb. The lecture was about very harmful effects of glyphosate on health, its structure and the beginning of today’s very used herbicide.
   Glyphosate is a subject of political, scientific and media controversy which proofs that permit for using herbicide isn't a guarantee for human and environment health.
   In project whose custodian is Medical school Varaždin participated students Matea Hranić and Barbara Golubić with mentor prof. Nataša Vuković, Ana Debeljak and Ivana Zorotović students of Secondary School "Braća Radić" Kaštel Štafilić with mentor prof. Marija Rapanić and Valentina Gretić Sadiković and Patricia Jozić students of School for Nurses Mlinarska in Zagreb with mentor prof Đurđica Stanešić.
   Except they were "introduced" with Glyphosate, students with their mentors and coordinators from Kaštel Štafilić could enjoy a walk through city to School for Nurses Mlinarska where they continued with analysis on previous work, agreement and assignment of tasks in continuation of project and the way of presenting it on 12th review of "Days E- medica" in April 2019 at Terme Tuhelj

Barbara Golubić & Matea Hranić


 Thank you for the support project E-medica: Minimize

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