October 12, 2020
By: Samir Lakhani, Eco-Soap Bank
Eco-Soap Bank, a global nonprofit organization employing women to recycle leftover soap from factories, and Mina Guli, a longstanding water advocate, are teaming up together to tackle COVID-19 and raise awareness about the newfound importance of handwashing with soap. Together, the partnership will donate 50,000 bars of soap to schools this week in 5 developing countries.
Right now, we’re washing our hands, our clothes and the surfaces around our home more than ever. For most of us, the process is relatively straightforward – we do it without a second thought: tap on, hands underneath, apply soap and sing happy birthday while we scrub.
But for the 3 billion people on our planet that don’t have access to adequate handwashing facilities, it’s a very different story.
The world is in the midst of a global COVID-19 pandemic that is threatening to destroy the life and health of vulnerable groups and devastate the economies of the developing world.
After months of lockdowns intended to contain and mitigate the spread and effects of the deadly COVID-19 virus, the developing world is now beginning to reopen its schools. This new phase is fraught with risk, especially in the developing world where resources are few and children and elderly people often live close together in the same household.
To prevent further escalation of the COVID-19 pandemic, it is crucial that as many as possible of these reopening schools are provided with basic access to soap and handwashing education. Handwashing with soap constitutes the most cost-effective method to combat the detrimental effects of COVID-19 and other hygiene-related illnesses, but lacking soap availability and hygiene awareness represents a significant obstacle to current mitigation efforts.
The #Sweat4Soap campaign is simple and lifesaving: for every kilometer that is run or walked from October 10-17, 2020 using the hashtag #Sweat4Soap, a bar of soap will be donated to a community in need. Participants have already logged 5,500 kms equaling 5,500 bars of soap! So grab your running or walking shoes and #Sweat4Soap to save lives!
About Eco-Soap Bank
Eco-Soap Bank employs disadvantaged women worldwide to recycle leftover soap from hotels and factories and redistributes it to impoverished communities along with hygiene education to reduce disease and save lives.
To date, the organization employs 154 women who have provided more than 9 million bars of soap and education to over 3 million people in 15 developing countries, supporting over 2,500 schools, health clinics, and refugee settlements.
Eco-Soap Bank and Soap Manufacturers
Eco-Soap Bank maintains a diversified recycling and sourcing strategy through partnerships with medium-sized and large global FMCGs, which generate millions of bars of usable discarded soap each year. We collect those waste volumes and help these companies become zero-waste manufacturers and achieve their social impact goals. Since January 2020, we’ve sourced 400 metric tons of soap waste—and we estimate that we’re currently collecting only a small fraction of the global volume of waste. Please get in touch to collaborate to recycle surplus soap and save lives: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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© 2017 The Global Handwashing Partnership (GHP).