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Expert Workshop

Whole-School Allergy Awareness & Practical Action Management

On February 23rd 2015 a group of experts in allergy, education and health education came together to discuss the current issues around food allergies in school and collaborate on a supportive approach to enable schools to review their policy and practice around allergy. Hosted at Highgate School, London, the workshop was a unique opportunity to focus on key practical issues for schools. Short presentations from the perspective of a nurse, teacher, clinical expert, psychologist, educationalist, and allergy sufferers led onto an afternoon open discussion.

Summaries of each presentation are available to download here

You can now watch the workshop in full by clicking the images below to view each presentation:

Jennette Higgs, Food for Fit Ltd

Why we are here and where do we want to be?

Get a little more acquainted with the project and watch Jennette, the driving force, introduce the project which has been in her scope now for many years. She uses the opportunity to reveal results from school survey work that highlighted many concerning results and talks about the current situation with allergy management in schools. Introducing the idea of a whole school approach to tackle food allergy, she shares her vision for the future.

Joe Harvey, Health Education Trust

From SNAG to SAAG - a proven process for delivering effective health and wellbeing policy in schools

Joe discusses his experiences working with policies and regulations in the past as well as the current problems faced by many schools. He explains the basis for a good policy and introduces the School Allergy Awareness Group (SAAG). This adopts the proven SNAG process within food policy development which is transferable to food allergy for schools.

Dr Audrey Dunn Galvin, University College Cork

A brief overview of the issues and anxieties for young people with food allergy

Dr Galvin discusses the psychological effects of chronic disease, from experience to coping. She explains that school is vital in the developmental process, playing an important role in shaping and determining physical and psychological health. Using current allergy statistics, she discusses the effect allergies can have on the allergic pupil, parents and peers too.

Lindsey McManus, Allergy UK

About Allergy UK and why they are concerned about schools.

Lindsey introduces Allergy UK and their work with schools, parents and children over the past 23 years. Recognising that allergy is particularly stressful for young people, and the huge impact it has on lives, Allergy UK is a firm supporter of the project.

Amena Warner, Allergy UK

Allergy assessment and risk management; the importance of health and education for safe environments.

Amena explains what allergy is and discusses the importance of understanding the wide variation of signs and symptoms. She explains the more practical side of allergy and the necessity for simple practices such as hand washing.

Andrew Craig, American Peanut Council

About the American Peanut Council’s role and commitment to supporting research and progress in treating peanut allergy?

Andrew discusses the American Peanut Councils unconditional support for this project. Dr Craig also talks about American Peanut Councils long standing relationship with the allergy world and the need to show people what policy means.

Todd Lindsey, Highgate School

Why Highgate School wants to improve its allergy management policies and practices and its vision for the future

Todd talks frankly about a situation that could occur at any school, which prompted Highgate to seek expert guidance. While they thought they had sound policies in place, Highgate experienced what could have been a potentially fatal incident which rocked the school and their confidence. He discusses the many changes they have already implemented as a result and the ongoing plans and participation of the project.

Lynne Regent, Anaphylaxis Campaign

About Anaphylaxis Campaign and its plans as relevant to schools and young people

Lynne introduces the Anaphylaxis Campaign as the only UK charity that focuses solely on anaphylaxis and the work they have been carrying out for the last 20 years. She talks about their resources as well as past and present key campaigns.

Ruth Holroydd, whatallergy.com

Experiences of growing up with serious food allergies – why schools need to do it better.

Ruth discusses in a light hearted manner her very serious experiences of allergy at school through the 70s and 80s. She explains that allergies affect all aspects of life and shows her continued support for this project. Listen first hand to a lifetime allergy sufferer who continues on her allergic march.

Hazel Gowland, Allergy Action

An insight into day to day food allergy management principles, problems and practices, as relevant to young people and school caterers.


Hazel talks frankly from personal experience and a career spent involved in food allergy. She highlights the many challenges faced by allergy sufferers in varying surroundings from nurseries to leaving home. Hazel also pinpoints what she believes to be the three life skills essential for people with allergies; food handling, consumer advocacy, and the understanding to manage emergencies.

This presentation is no longer available.