In July and August of 2010, BABU tackled the issue of hand hygiene in various settings in Nepal. With representatives on the ground in Kathmandu, they delivered three school presentations in different school settings in the city, and installed hand cleaning stations and a poster campaign at the International Friendship Children’s Hospital.
With the assistance of various international volunteers from Germany, Belgium, U.S.A. and Nepal, representatives shared valuable knowledge about hand hygiene, hand washing techniques, and fun activities with approximately 150 children from ages six to twelve in their demonstrations. Using the Glitterbug Training System (by Brevis Corporation) and English/Nepali worksheets, volunteers walked students through the five steps to proper hand washing, when to wash their hands, and why they should wash their hands. Kids loved seeing the ‘kitanu’ (Nepali translation for germs) on their hands, and worked fervishly to become handwashing champions. They also coloured some handwashing posters and a worksheet to bring home as a reminder of the importance of clean hands for themselves and their families.
Click here to check out a photo gallery of our handwashing activities and to download a copy of the worksheets.
The handcleaning stations in IFCH were constructed after four weeks of challenging work to procure the necessary materials, create the poster campaign and get the necessary hand sanitizer to get the project off the ground. Currently, BABU is using a WHO hand-sanitizer formula that is of a medical standard. As a cost-control measure, the formula is made from easily attainable chemicals. As of now, this has reduced our cost of hand sanitizer by 60%. Creating or purchasing the hand sanitizer is our greatest challenge in terms of funding and sustainability. Although this is only a pilot program, eleven hand cleaning stations were erected outside each of the wards or hallways for both patients and staff to use before they enter the wards. After further assessment of the effectiveness and potential barriers to using the hand sanitizer, we would like to expand this to have readily accessed hand sanitizer between every bed in each ward.
BABU would like to send a special thanks out to Sharif Ali for creating the graphics used in the Clean Hands, Health Body campaign and worksheets.
We would also like to thank our various donors who supported this project, as well as the volunteers on the ground in Nepal who made this happen. A very special thank you to Tsering, Tenzing and Sarah for really making this project happen.