Brazilian teacher
Project Type - Pilot Projects

Increasing Dementia Awareness in Brazil through Education

Educating Brazilian school children on the aging process, brain health, and dementia
Latin America & Caribbean


There is no national dementia plan approved in Brazil, and no national-wide programs focused on dementia awareness and stigma reduction in schools. In the global action plan response to dementia, the World Health Organization (WHO) encourages school students and teachers to develop programs adapted to the relevant context to encourage dementia-friendly attitudes in the community. In addition to the positive impact on people living with dementia today, increasing children’s understanding will have long-term benefits as they approach adulthood. Teaching about the aging process, brain health, and dementia can also help educate young people about the importance of a healthy lifestyle, including a healthy diet and regular physical exercise, among other actions to avoid aging-associated diseases. In this sense, the school education system may be one such way to provide all members of society with knowledge and thus reduce stigma towards dementia and increase understanding of brain health and the aging process. From a literature search, it is clear that programs on dementia in schools are still scarce worldwide. Yet, the few reports on the efficacy of these programs shows the positive impact on students. We will study the feasibility of a structured course focused on content related to brain health, aging, and dementia to be delivered to teachers from the late years of fundamental schools in Brazil.

Project Details

We aim to introduce a toolkit for teachers to make the didactic transposition, that is, to incorporate the content into their classes in the school setting. The expected impacts of the program on students, parents, and the community, in general, are related to: 

  • increasing awareness and understanding of brain health, the aging process, and the different types of dementia that can affect older adults; 
  • cultivating a better understanding of the importance of a healthy lifestyle, embedding knowledge from the program, and associating it to a reduction in the risk of developing dementia; 
  • and hopefully, a generally altered perception of older people. 

It is expected that the program will continue in future academic years with its structure being incorporated into curricula and didactic books nationwide.