Group leads call for proper handwashing
[Editor’s note: The following is a sponsored post by the Manila Water Foundation.]
As part of the international call to raise awareness on the importance of proper handwashing in preventing the spread of communicable diseases, Manila Water Foundation (MWF) will once again lead a month-long celebration of the Global Handwashing Day (GHD).
MWF will visit schools, communities, and malls to teach the seven steps of proper handwashing and when it should be practiced. Adhering to this year’s theme "Our Hands, Our Future," the series of events also aims to educate Filipinos about the role that handwashing plays in keeping one healthy and in attaining a great future.
This year’s celebration was launched at The Mind Museum, where actress and mother Bettinna Carlos shared why she supports proper handwashing as this year’s celebrity advocate.
"I support this advocacy because it’s actually the small and simple things that many people do not know that have big effects, such as proper handwashing. This can actually prevent children from having diarrhea and other diseases. As a parent, I am very intentional in teaching this small habit to my child because it will really affect her future," she said.
At the kickoff event, MWF also invited children supported by the Educational Research and Development Assistance Foundation, a non-profit organization that provides educational assistance to elementary school pupils from less privileged families.
During the daylong exhibit, almost 1,000 schoolchildren from various schools in Metro Manila and nearby provinces, along with their teachers and companions, learned about the seven steps of proper handwashing. They also and participated in interactive learning sessions, games, and experiments.
A handwashing event and signing of names on the pledge wall to show support to the advocacy concluded the event.
Aside from the event at The Mind Museum, MWF will bring the celebration to key locations in Luzon and Visayas. It will then be followed by events in Sta. Rosa, Laguna; Clark, Pampanga; Quezon City; San Mateo, Rizal; Malay, Aklan; Enchanted Kindgom in Laguna; and Market! Market! in Taguig.
To further this advocacy, MWF aims to activate an online campaign on Facebook and a public chat on Viber. MWF also launched an educational audio-visual presentation, which is being played on MMDA’s electronic billboards at key locations along EDSA until October 31.
This celebration marks MWF’s fifth year in implementing the campaign in the country. During the event, MWF President Geodino Carpio expounded on why MWF continues to support proper handwashing through GHD.
"Manila Water Foundation’s focus is on WASH or Water Access, Sanitation, and Hygiene. We implement that focus through a lot of information and education campaigns on the proper use of water, and part of that is promoting proper handwashing. Studies show that 272 million schooldays are lost every year because students are absent from school mainly because of diarrhea and other related diseases which are transmitted by having dirty hands.
"With us promoting regular and proper handwashing, we hopefully will one day cut that number down to zero and have much productive, happier, healthier, and more educated kids that will lead to a healthier world,” he said.
Carpio added that GHD is made possible through the years by forging partnerships. Among those who shared their support to MWF’s 2017 Global Handwashing Day celebration are Green Cross, Pilot, and Philusa Corporation, with the special participation of Nescafe and Toy Kingdom.
Venue partners include The Mind Museum, Enchanted Kingdom, and Market! Market!, while helping promote the month-long activities and events are Globe, Rappler, Eagle Broadcasting Company, Viber, Business World, and Manila Standard.
For more details, follow MWF’s Facebook page and Viber public account, Manila Water Foundation GHD 2017.