Learning about health and safety can at times be perceived as a bit dull. The LOcHER Project (Learning Occupational Health by Experiencing Risks) is a UK wide approach to teaching students about health and safety in an engaging and interactive way. This approach allows students to identify key health and safety risks in their own subject area, learn about them, showcase what they have created and then take that experience into the world of work.
By experiencing risks in a controlled way, the LOcHER approach helps embed important health and safety knowledge into long-term memory, influencing longer term positive attitudes and behaviours while simultaneously developing a range of complementary essential skills.
Recently a group of Princes Trust students focused on investigating the dangers of asbestos, guided by Andy Cathro, the Health and Safety Officer at the college. They researched the topic thoroughly, visiting a local company which removes asbestos and a laboratory which tests for asbestos, learning about this substance and its associated health risks. The students also visited a charity which supports those suffering from asbestos related diseases reinforcing its impact on peoples’ lives. Most touching of all for the students was the fact that the gentleman they interviewed sadly died in March 2018 from an asbestos related disease. The final output of their LOcHER project was creating a film on the dangers of asbestos, raising awareness of the dangers of asbestos with others.
The annual Safety Groups UK Awards ceremony recognises the innovative work being done to raise standards of health and safety and the Princes Trust students from Dundee and Angus College won the Lord Cullen Trophy for Innovation at the House of Lords on 28 January 2019 for their film on the dangers of asbestos.
Dundee and Angus College were the first college in Scotland to use the LOcHER approach. They are delighted that this film, and subsequent projects have been recognised and continue using this method of creative health and safety learning and teaching, recognising its value in contributing to the ‘Helping GB Work Well’ strategy and in preparing learners effectively for the world of work.
Learn about the LOcHER project in the short video below: