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“Wash your hands with soap”, I told my kids as I opened the door on their return from school. Now I realize that this is the first instruction that goes out every day from mamma’s “Motherly love and concerns” Bean Bag .As a mother, protecting my children from germs and infections is my top priority and like all mothers, I realize the importance of washing hands which prevents the entry of diseases in my child’s body and is the first step to basic hygiene. But wait…Did I ever knew the extent of impact a simple act of washing our hands can have on a child, especially during first 28 days of birth.. or did I ever knew the deadly impact of not washing our hands before eating or after using toilet can have on a new born child.
I was dumb studded when I watched the following story of Chamki, shot in a small village in India, where many kids die because of diarrhea. The film showcased an emotional video of a daughter, Chamki who appears from the future (aged 6-7 years) to thank her mother, doing something very simple, yet important during the pregnancy and during the child’s early life: washing hands with soap.
Small actions can make a big difference. Watch ‘Chamki’s story and show it to a to-be mother to Helpa ChildReach5
In 2012 Lifebuoy launched the Help a Child Reach 5 campaign, to raise awareness of the importance of good hand washing habits, with the aim of reducing child deaths due to preventable infections.
As the world’s leading health soap, Lifebuoy aims to make a difference by creating accessible hygiene products (soap) and promoting healthy hygiene habits. Lifebuoy has successfully reached to 250 million people through its behavior change programme, teaching them good hand washing habits for life. With this in mind, Lifebuoy aims to change the hand washing behavior of one billion people by 2020.
Over 40% of child deaths under the age of 5 happen in the first 28 days of newborn, washing hands with soap before touching a baby is proven to prevent many of these deaths. Lifebuoy aims to help teach all mothers this life saving habit and HelpaChildReach5.
This year, Lifebuoy is taking its message to new mothers, building awareness and improving hand hygiene habits during the crucial first 28 days after delivery (the neonatal period), when mothers and their babies need it the most.
Lifebuoy’s ‘Help A Child Reach 5’ Hand washing Ambassador Karol Deign said, “I was truly touched to see the new film on neonatal care – Future Child. We need to continue to scale up hand washing and sanitation behavior change programmes to reach more people with life-saving messages and help reduce child mortality. I am proud to be part of Lifebuoy’s Help a Child Reach 5 hand washing programme over the past three years.”
Some more astonishing facts on child mortality data:
Every year, more than 6 million children die before they reach the age of five, many due to preventable infections.
Over 40% of child deaths occur in neonatal period, when children are most vulnerable.
Every year, 6 million children die before they reach the age of 5.
Hygiene, particularly hand washing with soap, is one of the most cost-effective ways to prevent many of these deaths. Lifebuoy’s programme aim to increase awareness of the importance of hand washing with soap, as well as changing behaviors to make it a habit everywhere. To know more on Lifebuoy’s campaign and incredible work that they have upheld, please visit their website http://www.lifebuoy.com/socialmission/help-childreach5/
At an event hosted in Mumbai with 100 pregnant mothers, Kajol, Hand washing Ambassador for HACR5 & Samir Singh, Executive Director, Unilever, unveiled the new film on neonatal – Future Child and announced a big hand washing initiative impacting millions of rural people in Bihar, India partnered by Children’s Investment Fund Foundation (CIFF).
How can you help?
Share Sangrahi's story, show it to expecting mothers and join a global movement to teach good handwashing habits that can save millions of young lives. #HelpAChildReach5.