Please, please don’t underestimate the power of a bar of soap!

TEDDr Myriam Sidibe has taken to the TED stage recently, armed with a bar of soap as her weapon of choice in the fight against childhood disease.

Dr Sidibe says that over 600,000 children could be saved each year as a result of handwashing with soap. She talks about how a simple act like handwashing with soap can reduce flu, trachoma, SARS, cholera and Ebola outbreak, and eventually, stop children from dying.

Handwashing with soap is more like a good habit, and the lack of development of this habit is wide, regardless of rich or poor countries. Statistic shows that four out of five people don’t wash their hands when they come out of the toilet and even in the developing or poor countries, soap is available.

Dr. Sidibe is involved in the Help a Child Reach 5 campaign, and for the past nine years, has been promoting soap which initiated the handwashing with soap program, mainly in Asia and Africa. The program includes educating society and government about the importance of handwashing with soap and inculcating the habit for children to wash their hands with soap.

The Help a Child Reach 5 program has so far reached over 183 million people in 16 countries, with the goal to reach 1 billion by 2020.

power of handwashing

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Image: Oxfam East Africa – flickr


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