Global Handwashing Day
Today is Global Handwashing Day, a global advocacy day dedicated to increasing awareness and understanding about the importance of handwashing with soap as an effective and affordable way to prevent diseases and save lives.
Why is Global Handwashing Day important
Global Handwashing Day serves as a yearly reminder that handwashing with soap and water is one of the best steps we can take to avoid getting sick and spreading germs to others. The observance was established by the Global Handwashing Partnership in 2008.
How to observe Global Handwashing Day
It is an opportunity to learn, design, test, replicate, and share creative ways to encourage people to wash their hands with soap at critical times.
Handwashing with soap and water is not only simple and inexpensive but also can dramatically reduce the number of young children who get sick. Teaching people about handwashing helps them and their communities stay healthy. Handwashing education in the community can:
- Reduce the number of people who get sick with diarrhea by about 23–40%
- Reduce absenteeism due to gastrointestinal illness in schoolchildren by 29–57%
- Reduce diarrheal illness in people with weakened immune systems by about 58%
- Reduce respiratory illnesses, like colds, in the general population by about 16–21%
- Frequent Questions About Hand Hygiene
- Show Me the Science
- Hand Sanitizer Use Out and About
- Handwashing: A Family Activity
- Handwashing: A Healthy Habit in the Kitchen
- Hand Hygiene in Healthcare Settings
- COVID-19: How to Protect Yourself and Others
- Healthy Schools, Healthy People Toolkitexternal icon
- UNICEF and WHO: Hand Hygiene for Allexternal icon
- UN and other international NGO
- Non-Profits website for the observance
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention