#HandHygieneForAll Global Handwashing Day 2020

'The COVID-19 pandemic is a stark reminder that one of the most effective ways to stop the spread of a virus is also one of the simplest: hand hygiene. It not only protects us from contracting the disease, but also stops transmission to other people.'

We ALL have a role to play in realising safer and healthier homes, communities, and societies. For many of us in the Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) sector, it’s not simply about the provision of hand hygiene and soap facilities in private and public spaces. It’s about delivering to the short-term COVID-19 prevention needs of people, without losing sight of the long-term sustainability dimensions of universal access to hand hygiene. And, the world is not lacking approaches and methods to achieve this. In this presentation we document a myriad of ways SNV and its partners are supporting governments thus far.

This day, 15 October 2020, we celebrate collaboration and the many sanitation heroes who are fearlessly and tirelessly working towards a long-term and sustainable vision of sanitation and (hand) hygiene for all.

Ga ra gi den lu lab si tsang dra (Hand hygiene for all)

Keeping the public safe in Bhutan

Public areas and buildings such as health care facilities and public transport terminals are high-risk areas for disease transmission. With UNICEF Bhutan, accessible water tap points (to facilitate use by small children and wheelchair users), complete with distance markers, were constructed in public transport terminals. These facilities are not only providing hand hygiene facilities but are additionally cutting the costs of the commuting public as they also deliver free drinking water.

Before COVID-19 became a reality for us all, SNV in Bhutan was already supporting Bhutan’s Ministry of Health in its mission to improve WASH in health care facilities (HCFs). With the Ministry, SNV in Bhutan conducted the country’s first nationwide survey on WASH in HCFs. Among others, the 2019 survey found that hand hygiene at points of care was 27% shy of realising 100% access. In this video, SNV in Bhutan’s Raj Kumar explains how the government and its HCF partners rose to the challenge to improve hand hygiene in HCFs, and how these (ongoing) efforts have helped in HCF preparedness to provide quality care during COVID-19 (and beyond).

SNV in Bhutan’s hand hygiene interventions in HCFs is part of a wider effort to reinforce local government prioritisation of WASH in HCFs to strengthen quality of care within institutional settings. Read more.

Finally, to ensure that hygiene programming and safety precautions reach larger groups, such as people with hearing and visual impairments, intellectual disability, and their caregivers - our team developed important informative materials that speak to their specific needs and realities. Hear what SNV in Bhutan's Thinley Dem has to say about this initiative.

SNV in Bhutan's WASH interventions are supported by the Australian Government's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade.

Hand hygiene for all

How evidence-based advocacy is raising the bar on sanitation in Ghana

On 7 June 2019, Nandom district – a partner district of SNV in Ghana’s SSH4A Results Programme – became the first district to achieve open defecation free status in Ghana. Throughout, lessons from SSH4A RP were used to enrich ongoing advocacy capacity strengthening activities of the Voices for Change Partnership (V4CP) project.

In this video, Theresa Swanzy of SNV in Ghana talks about how V4CP partners in Nandom are collaborating with and mobilising actions from institutions, groups, and communities to respond to the global health pandemic (and beyond).

Through the GrEEn project, SNV in Ghana is also working with entrepreneurial young people such as John Mark Addo, winner of the GrEEn COVID-19 Innovation Challenge. Read more.

SSH4A RP was a results-based finance programme implemented as part of the WASH Results Programme of the United Kingdom's Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO, formerly DFID). The ongoing project Voices for Change Partnership (V4CP) is supported by the Dutch Government's Directorate-General for International Cooperation (DGIS). And, GrEEn is a joint partnership of the European Union, the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Ghana, the United Nations Capital Development Fund (UNCDF), and SNV.

Tangan bersih untuk semua (Hand hygiene for all)

WASH SDG youth partner YSC: trendsetters in the Indonesian sanitation landscape

In this video, 22-year old Muhammad Ilham Alfandi, member of Youth Sanitation Concerns (YSC) Indonesia (a WASH SDG partner of SNV) reflects on the importance of capacity strengthening initiatives for young people. M.Ilham Afandi briefly describes SNV's mentorship and the path that YSC has taken to secure funding for its own COVID-19 efforts.

The creativity of young people to influence and champion good sanitation behaviours cannot be underestimated. Young people are known to ‘push the envelope,’ and are full of energy and hope to make a (and be the) change. Read more about YSC’s behavioural change communication activities.

The WASH SDG programme is a multi-country consortium initiative - SNV, Plan and WAI - supported by the Dutch Government's Directorate-General for International Cooperation (DGIS). The consortium is coordinated by Simavi as a member of the Water Alliance International (WAI).

Higiene das mãos para todos (Hand hygiene for all)

Mozambique's COVID-19 prevention campaign at public water points

Behavioural change motivators and messages vary by target audience. In this video commentary, SNV in Mozambique's David Afonso walks us through the efforts of the Ministry of Public Works, in coordination with the Ministry of Health and the WASH Cluster Group (of which SNV is a member), to promote hand washing with soap and safety measures/behaviours to reduce the spread of the coronavirus today and increase the prospects of better health futures - for community users, handpump caretakers, and water supply systems managers.

Beyond communicating safety and hygiene measures at public water points, the team is also ensuring that hand hygiene messages and COVID-19 preventative measures reach students who are now studying from home. Read more here.

Both activities were supported by the United Kingdom's Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office (FCDO, formerly DFID)-supported project, Capacity Enhancement for Decentralised Services (CEDeS) in WASH.

Haatko sarsafai sabaiko lagi (Hand hygiene for all)

SNV’s adaptive WASH programming in Nepal enables swift action and immediate relief

Our team in Nepal are supporting COVID-19 government-led safety and hygiene initiatives across the country. They have been engaged in micro-level community messaging coupled with broadcasting messages via local radio stations, loudspeaker cars, and hoarding boards. To aid makeshift healthcare facilities (temporary HCFs set up in vacant schools) and communities in practising handwashing with soap, foot-operated disability-inclusive handwashing stations have been installed across the country.

The handwashing with soap facilities that are being set up in makeshift healthcare facilities are servicing sanitation needs of people who are quarantined, and are expected to benefit the hand hygiene needs of school administrators and students when schools can open up safely.

SNV is active in both urban and rural WASH settings in Nepal through the support of the Dutch Government's Directorate-General for International Cooperation (DGIS) and the Australian Government's Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, respectively.

Mikono safi kwa wote (Hand hygiene for all)

Kanyaga Kanyaga: handwashing with soap made easier and safer in Tanzania

In Arusha, Tanzania, numerous low-cost, foot-pedal, handwashing stations are mushrooming across the city's public centres and institutions. Learn more about the Kanyaga Kanyaga, and the many steps that the city council, SNV and the city's water and sanitation utility are taking jointly to grow demand for the facility, promote its maintenance, and normalise hand washing practice with soap.

With our government partners in Arusha and Shinyanga, SNV in Tanzania is making important inroads to normalise good hygiene behaviours – including hand hygiene – in both cities. Very soon, a sanitation and hygiene behaviour change communications website and repository will be launched. This website will serve as the platform for the campaign, ‘Mazingira Safi, Maisha Bora.’

The WASH SDG programme is a multi-country consortium initiative - SNV, Plan and WAI - supported by the Dutch Government's Directorate-General for International Cooperation (DGIS). The consortium is coordinated by Simavi as a member of the Water Alliance International (WAI).

Cilo me cing pi jo ducu (Hand hygiene for all)

District-wide O&M system in Lira, Uganda sustains community access to water sources

Proper hand hygiene with soap is considered a key preventative measure to safeguard individuals and whole communities from contracting and spreading the coronavirus. In Uganda, SNV's JR Okello explains how the IWAS (Improving Water Supply Sustainability) team's work with district governments, handpump mechanic associations, and the community is ensuring that districts have area-wide access to water for their drinking and sanitation (handwashing) needs.

Beyond the Lira district, there is much to celebrate countrywide. Between April to June, Uganda’s hand hygiene rate surpassed the country’s 2020 target by 36 percentage points! Read SNV’s Dennis Alioni’s thoughts on how the country may ‘seize this handwashing with soap moment'.

SNV's rural water efforts in Lira, Uganda and other districts are being implemented as part of the IWAS II project, which is supported by the Austrian Development Agency of the Government of Austria.

Making life-saving information accessible to all

Ga ra gi den lu lab si tsang dra (Hand hygiene for all)

Keeping health care facilities and their staff, patients, and visitors safe from disease transmission is crucial to ensure that nothing less than quality health care is offered by facilities. In this educational music video, singer Kinley Wangchuk outlines the steps of proper infection prevention control (IPC).

Many handwashing tutorials and behavioural change communication activities forget that mainstream and established methods of outreach can potentially exclude. COVID-19 has elevated the urgency to reach all with (hand) hygiene messages... by all, this includes people with disabilities.

ການອະນາໄມມື ສຳ ລັບທຸກຄົນ (Hand hygiene for all)

In Lao PDR, our team produced a music video to reach (young) adults, an animation for children, and radio spots for listeners who would normally obtain information from radio. Our animation – complete with sign language – had been broadcasted as part of the TV educational programmes for young learners throughout the summer months. Read more.

সকলের হাত, সুরক্ষিত থাক (Hand hygiene for all)

It is easy to disregard the importance of proper hand washing techniques. In this informative video, our team in Bangladesh gives a step-wise presentation of how to wash hands with soap properly. This video forms part of SNV in Bangladesh’s support to the Government of Bangladesh’s hygiene promotion activities.


Contributors: Abilio Cuamba, Alex Grumbley, Anjani Abella, Cécile Laborderie, David Afonso, Dennis Alioni, Dorah Egunyu, Gabrielle Halcrow, Gian Melloni, Iffah Rachmi, John Robert Okello, Le Huong, Lek Bikram, Leyla Khalifa, Man Kumari Sapkota, Marc Perez Casas, Muhammad Ilham Alfandi, Olivier Germain, Raj Kumar Bhattrai, Ratan Budhathoki, Shah , Sharon Roose, Tahmina Haque, Tashi Dorji, Theresa Swanzy, Thinley Dem. Photos: SNV in Nepal, SNV in Lao PDR/Bart Verweij, SNV in Ghana/Geoffrey Buta, SNV in Indonesia, SNV in Mozambique/PRONASAR, Pramewshwar Jha, Everest Club Dailekh/Dan Bahadur Kadayat, SNV in Tanzania, SNV in Uganda/Denis Onyodi, SNV in Lao PDR/Bart Verweij. Spark design and production: Silvana Summa