Inviting all students to take on the Global One Health Challenge

Inviting all students to take on the Global One Health Challenge

This World Rabies Day, the International Veterinary Students’ Association, the International Federation of Medical Students’ Associations (IFMSA) and the Global Alliance for Rabies Control (GARC) have set up the Global One Health Challenge for veterinary and medical students – it’s your chance to do something for your community, learn about a deadly disease and how to prevent it, and win a fabulous prize – a trip to an international conference in Spain!

Students and World Rabies Day

Every year on World Rabies Day, September 28, thousands of individuals and organizations conduct events to raise awareness about rabies and the need for pre-exposure canine vaccination and post-exposure human vaccination. Students have always been an active part of World Rabies Day, with past activities including veterinary schools across the US competing to host a rabies symposium at their universities, and individual students raising funds and awareness through sponsored activities such as marathons and mountain climbing. The themes over the last seven years all emphasized the need to work together in order to end this disease, and this year’s theme is no exception - #TogetherAgainstRabies.

The competition

Here are a few reasons why you should be part of the One Health Challenge:

  • Increase your knowledge of rabies prevention and learn valuable communication skills
  • Save human and animal lives through collaboration with other professions
  • Build relationships with others who want to make a difference
  • Teach your community to prevent rabies to save both human and animal lives
  • Advance global rabies awareness and prevention, by getting involved with international organizations
  • Gain a better understanding of the community in which you will work after graduating
  • Help to fund an ongoing rabies field project
  • Win a trip for all team members to the WVA/WMA Global Conference on the One Health Concept in May 2015 in Madrid – with your expenses paid!

What do I need to do?

First of all, get a team together – your team should have at least one veterinary or medical student, and it needs to have people from more than one field, such as (but not limited to) public health, education and environmentally related disciplines. A team can have a minimum of 2 members and a maximum of 5 members. Above all, we encourage cooperation between medical and veterinary students.

Register your team online at, and then organise an event in your community. It could be part of a broader rabies project that you’re involved in, or a standalone event.

We’re looking in particular for events that show:

  • strong partnerships that demonstrate the One Health approach, particularly those that show partnerships between medical and veterinary students, although other partnerships will also be considered.
  • effective outreach activities in the community – this can be measured by the number of people reached by the event

Share your event with others around the world – invite the media to your event, create and post videos online, spread the message through Facebook and other social media, or any other way you like, using the hashtags #TogetherAgainstRabies #OneHealthChallenge

One Health

One Health embraces both human and animal public health, inclusive of scientific method and research, community and governmental roles, communication and education. The One Health Challenge puts this approach into practice, giving veterinary and medical students the opportunity to see the benefits of working with other sectors to tackle complex diseases, by designing and implementing rabies prevention events in their communities.

For more details, posters, leaflets, a guidance manual, and the registration form, please visit, or email for further details. We’re very excited about receiving entries from all over the world – thank you for your interest in helping to end rabies.