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Proper health and hygiene practices can save lives, especially in developing countries where impoverished children are most at-risk. Diarrheal infection is the leading cause of children under the age of five. Every day, 2,195 children lose their lives to diarrhea, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). That’s more than AIDS, malaria, and measles combines, reports the CDC.

Saving lives starts in the home—by bringing health & hygiene training to impoverished communities, along with access to safe water.

Why Health & Hygiene Training?

A little girl wakes in her home in her small village. Every day of her life, she walks a long distance with her mother, searching for water. The water they do find makes her sick. She often misses school, clutching her stomach in agony due to waterborne illness.

Safe water is not a part of her life. Health and hygiene practices are completely foreign.

So when Healing Waters implements clean water solutions in impoverished communities, health & hygiene training is a critical component for success.

Contaminated water contributes to serious water-borne diseases such as dysentery and rotavirus, which cause severe diarrhea. But, “data from a number of studies showed that a 42%-47% reduction in diarrhea can occur when handwashing with soap and water is introduced into a community” per the CDC.

Along with the rest of the world, developing countries are battling COVID-19 but without the same availability of resources developed countries have. Unicef and the World Health Organization (WHO) partnered together and released a brief about the effectiveness of good WASH (water, sanitation, and hygiene) practices.

Below are three main points from the Unicef/WHO brief affirming health & hygiene’s effectiveness —  and WASH — against COVID-19.

  • Frequent and proper hand hygiene is one of the most important measures that can be used

to prevent infection with the COVID-19 virus. WASH practitioners should work to enable

more frequent and regular hand hygiene by improving facilities and using proven behaviour

change techniques.

  • WHO guidance on the safe management of drinking-water and sanitation services applies to

the COVID-19 outbreak. Extra measures are not needed. In particular, disinfection will

facilitate more rapid die-off of the COVID-19 virus.

  • Many co-benefits will be realized by safely managing water and sanitation services and

applying good hygiene practices. Such efforts will prevent many other infectious diseases,

which cause millions of deaths each year.

We know that health and hygiene training is life-saving for developing counties. Now what? We need to provide that training.

Implementing Health & Hygiene Training for Developing Countries

The heart of our health & hygiene training is treating the community with dignity and compassion. That means we work hard to ensure our training reaches the most people for the maximum impact. Our trainings focus on women, who are often the greatest influencers of the household. When they learn, the whole family learns.

Our health & hygiene training program teaches women about preventing illness in their households. We empower them by educating women about how water is contaminated, how germs cause disease, and how hygiene prevents the spread of germs. Women begin to understand their value when they can glean a deep understanding of God’s love for them, so we incorporate emotional and spiritual health development in addition to physical health training into our curriculum

It’s also critical to include children when implementing health & hygiene training in developing countries. We teach mothers who teach their children, who will teach their children. The entire community grows up healthy and thriving for generations to come.

Contact us today to partner with us to make a difference and provide hope to families around the world.

We’re on a mission to end the global water crisis. We build holistic clean water solutions and spread God’s love in at-risk communities around the world, empowering people not just to survive, but to thrive – physically, socially and spiritually.

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