MONDAY, OCTOBER 15 was marked internationally as Global Handwashing Day. It is a day initiated by the Global Handwashing Partnership (GHP) in August 2008 at the annual World Water Week in Stockholm, Sweden, with its focus, particularly on school children.
IN fact, records show that the focus for Global Handwashing Day’s inaugural year in 2008 was school children, who were taught the habit of handwashing with soap in more than 70 countries.
THE essence of the day is to create awareness and also to harp on the need for us as human beings to wash our hands clean before putting food into our mouths.
ALSO, the day is observed in lathering up for better health and hygiene, especially amongst school children. This year Global Handwashing Day had the theme: “Clean hands – a recipe for health.”
SOME may be wondering why a day would be observed for handwashing when in actual fact it is a habit that parents need to inculcate into their children.
WELL for us at Weekend Today such a day is important as it reminds and educates our children on the continuous need to wash their hands with soap before taking their meals or even putting their hands into their mouths.
WE know how our children like to play and more especially in every space, they find themselves. It is during their playing periods that many of them use their hands to invite germs.
THEREFORE, the role that the simple act of handwashing with soap plays in the lives of our children cannot be overemphasised. Indeed, it comes with loads of health benefits for these kids.
AMONG these health benefits are helping to reduce childhood mortality rate of respiratory diseases; death from diarrhoeal.
IT is one behavioural change that parents must equally assist and support their children to imbibe.
IT is imperative that as parents we teach our children to wash their hands with soap before eating and after using the toilet into a regular habit. And by doing this we will be helping to save more lives than any single vaccine or medical intervention, cutting deaths from diarrhea.
WHAT is more, handwashing with soap is very effective and the least expensive way to prevent diarrhea and acute respiratory infections. Handwashing is one of the many ways of teaching our children proper hygiene and thus must not be lost on parents.