ALLENTOWN, Pa. (WLVT) - According to the Environmental Defense Fund, a health advocacy group, Latino children are 40 times more likely to die from asthma than non-Latino white children.
On Tuesday, students and staff at South Mountain Middle School organized an asthma awareness event to help educate the community about the effects of asthma and how to handle it. About 70 percent of the children at South Mountain identify as Latino, and about 300 of the total school population have asthma. The school partnered with groups like the American Lung Association, Amerihealth Caritas, and the Lehigh Valley Health Network to make the awareness event possible.
“As a community school, we’re always looking to bring in those things that are necessary for our school, for our families, for our students,” said Community School Director, Joanne Garcia.
She said some students have missed school because of asthma-related problems, so having awareness events can help families learn what resources are available to help.
“I know whenever they’re playing sports, they get really tired, so I kind of wanted to know more about this and how it affects them, and how I can maybe help if they have an asthma attack,” said 7th-grade student Diana Moussa. She is apart of Student Leadership, and she said they recognized asthma was a problem in the school.
To continue educating students, families, and the community, South Mountain will have an interactive learning event, called Healthy Hoops, on May 23. Students will be involved with more community organizations, while getting the knowledge to help potentially save a life.