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Physical and mental health for young children
Physical and mental health for young children

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An example of a global initiative: UNICEF Handwashing Day

As mentioned in Session 4, effective handwashing is regarded as being critical in preventing the spread of infection and, to reflect this, UNICEF dedicate a day to promoting global handwashing.

A poster celebrating Global Handwashing Day
Figure 3 Global Handwashing Day

Providing the equipment needed for handwashing, warm water, soap and clean towels can be challenges for many people, regardless of where they live in the world. For example, remote areas that have limited water supply, refugee camps, areas that have been affected by natural disasters such as earthquakes, you may have other examples.

A photograph of children washing their hands
Figure 4 Gaining access to handwashing equipment can be a challenge in some parts of the world

Even in higher-income countries, people may not have easy access to handwashing equipment. For example, many families live in poor housing, or have very limited income. Again, you may think of other instances where access to handwashing equipment can be difficult, and this in turn means that children’s health can be negatively affected because of the increased risk of a communicable disease.