Sudan Children Join the World in Celebrating Global Handwashing Day

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UNICEF says: Choose Handwashing, Choose Health

UNICEF, Khartoum, October 15

Thousands of Sudanese children will join their peers, across the world in celebrating Global Hand Washing Day, an event aimed at increasing awareness of the importance of washing hands with soap.

In cooperation with the Ministry of Education and under the theme “ Choose Handwashing, Choose Health” children from different states will perform drama, songs and traditional dances focusing on the importance of 'handwashing' with soap as an effective and affordable way to prevent diseases.

“Turning 'handwashing' with soap before eating and after using the toilet into an ingrained habit could save more lives than any single vaccine or medical intervention, cutting deaths from diarrhea by almost half and deaths from acute respiratory infections by one-quarter,” said Geert Cappelaere, UNICEF Representative in Sudan.

Insufficient access to safe drinking water and proper sanitation services coupled with low level of good (appropriate) hygiene practices lead to the spread of water related diseases and have a significant impact on children's health and nutrition.

In Sudan, according to Health Statistical Report (2013), preventable diseases such as acute watery diarrhea (12%), and pneumonia (18%) are the leading causes of deaths in hospitals for children under five.

UNICEF and Water, Sanitation and Hygiene sector partners cooperate in raising families awareness on better hygienic and environmentally-friendly practices, with special focus on hand-washing with soap, proper disposal of wastewater and human waste, food hygienic behavior. These interventions are carried out through community mobilization effort (e.g, community dialogue, festivals, women group meeting, School Hygiene Clubs, as well as home visits) all over Sudan.

On the occasion of Global 'handwashing' Day, UNICEF and Water and Sanitation Partners (WASH) are calling on all stakeholders, including policy makers, civil society and media, to invest more in promoting 'handwashing' and to advocate for the availability of soap in public places such as schools, workplaces and restaurants.


UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere. For more information, visit: Follow us on Twitter and Facebook

For more information contact:
Eman Eltigani, UNICEF Khartoum, + 249 912 167 428,