Be a MATE
Recruit your school to become allergy aware. Download a copy to take to your school: Be a MATE952.54 KB
About Allergy & Anaphylaxis Australia's Be a M.A.T.E. program
The Be a M.A.T.E - Make Allergy Treatment Easier is an educational awareness program designed to help parents and educators to teach students and staff about food allergies and how to help their friends who are at risk of anaphylaxis.
Anyone can Be a M.A.T.E. by following these five easy steps:
Always take food allergies seriously
Don’t share food.
Wash hands after eating
Ask a friend what they are allergic to.
Get help immediately if a schoolmate has a reaction.
To enable a better understanding of life threatening food allergies and to know the importance of helping an allergic individual avoid a risky situation. This program aims to empower those at risk of anaphylaxis to self-manage their allergy but with support from those around them. Due to the unpredictable progress of each anaphylactic reaction, individuals at risk should never be expected self inject. It is our duty of care to be supportive through encouraging staff, friends and classmates to become allergy aware. Friends can look out for those at risk of anaphylaxis by helping them to avoid triggers, discourage risk taking, and motivate them to always carry their adrenaline/epinephrine auto injector and read food labels.
The Be a MATE educational awareness program is designed to provide educators with conversation starters and to encourage dialogue about food allergies.
Research in Australia is now showing that 1 in 10 infants is being diagnosed with food allergy. There is currently no cure for life threatening food allergy. The key to management is to avoid the trigger.
EDUCATE the school community about severe allergy.
ACTIVATE the Be a MATE program in your school.
Use the BE a MATE Class Discussion Guide and poster kit included in the Be a MATE pack to help implement simple strategies to educate your school community. This guide includes quizzes, word games, class discussion topics and activities which can be easily adapted to suit varying student age groups.
INTEGRATE the whole school community during Food Allergy Week (FAW).
Make it a date on your school calendar. Food Allergy Week is held during mid May of each year. This week is an ideal time to review your school’s management strategies and guidelines and to remind your school community about the students enrolled that have food allergy.
CERTIFICATE recognition is available for students whose actions have helped Make Allergy Treatment Easier.
A REAL MATE is someone whose actions help keep friends safe, prevent a serious allergic reaction or even save a life.
National Annual Awards given out by Allergy & Anaphylaxis Australia
Allergy & Anaphylaxis Australia has 2 annual awards
Dr John Ruhno award for an individual who has made a significant contribution to raising awareness of anaphylaxis
Be a MATE award is awarded to a school anywhere in Australia that has Made Allergy Treatment Easier for those students.
Nominations start in September with the winners being announced in February of the following year.
TOOLS in your Be a MATE
(Make Allergy Treatment Easier) toolkit
There are several resources in our Be a M.A.T.E. toolkit for helping you increase allergy awareness and understanding within the whole school community.
Be a MATE starter kit
The Be a MATE starter kit contains the very basics to get you on your way to raising food allergy awareness. Whether you are a principal, teacher or parent this kit will help you school teach staff and students about food allergies, and all without being confrontational.
Starter Kit covers:
Basics allergy and anaphylaxis facts
Dispel the myths
Easy tips and activities to implement into your school’s allergen risk minimisation policy
Information to increase class awareness about food allergy
Encourage peers to become allergy aware and help those with the food allergy avoid their trigger
Understand the importance of what to do if someone has a severe allergic reaction
Included is a Discussion booklet with activities to suit all ages as well as lesson plans, several posters and examples of the Be a MATE brochure and Be a MATE bookmark.
Be a M.A.T.E Brochure:
This brochure is an ideal resource to send home in the school bag with all primary school students. It uses friendly wording and covers the basic tips on how to support those students at risk of anaphylaxis. This brochure is the ideal conversation starter to get the non allergy sufferers (parents and students) on board with your school’s allergy awareness program. Available in Class packs of 30 - Year pack of 100 and School pack of 500
Be a M.A.T.E Bookmark
Everyone needs a bookmark with basic tips on how to support those students at risk of anaphylaxis. Use the bookmark as a constant reminder for students to keep in their school or library books to reinforce your school’s allergy awareness program.
Available in Class packs of 30 and Community pack of 100.
Recruit a M.A.T.E on enrolment and orientation days
5 Things you should know about food allergies
This informative easy to read brochure is the perfect communication tool give to the family of the new enrolments and to all parents on orientation days. It outlines key information about allergies. A good introduction to make new parents aware you are an allergy aware school.
This brochure can be downloaded here: Five things you should know about Food Allergies643.73 KB
The print and distribution of more than 64,000 Be-A-MATE resources was made possible due to an independent project grant from GSK.
Content updated January 2017