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The Global Handwashing Partnership

Who We Are

The Global Handwashing Partnership is a coalition of international stakeholders who work explicitly to promote handwashing with soap and recognize hygiene as a pillar of international development and public health.

The Global Handwashing Partnership (GHP) is a coalition of national and international organizations committed to promoting handwashing with soap on a large scale, including:

  • Private sector corporations that bring state-of-the-art marketing know-how and techniques to the table, as well as support handwashing programs at the national level,
  • Academic institutions that contribute the latest behavior change theory and scientific evidence of the effectiveness of handwashing, and
  • Non-governmental and community-based organizations that promote and integrate handwashing programs.

Are you interested in joining us? Learn more here.

The Steering Committee

Steering Committee members provide regular input to steer the direction and deliverables of GHP, including decision-making and contributions to business plan, consultations and product development. They actively work in handwashing, partner across sectors to increase handwashing, engage in handwashing promotion activities around Global Handwashing Day, and they share their handwashing expertise. All Steering Committee members contribute substantial financial and/or in-kind resources to the GHP and attend biannual Steering Committee meetings.

Meet the Steering Committee

Colgate-Palmolive was a founding member of the GHP. A cleaner, healthy environment is important to Colgate not only because it’s the right thing to do, but also because it makes good business sense. Colgate’s 2011 to 2015 sustainability strategy maintains its emphasis on People, Performance and Planet, with focused, measurable goals that align with the Company’s business objectives. As part of that commitment, Colgate aims to provide handwashing awareness to over 50 million households.

FHI 360

FHI 360 is a nonprofit human development organization dedicated to improving lives in lasting ways by advancing integrated, locally driven solutions. Staff include experts in health, education, nutrition, environment, economic development, civil society, gender, youth, research and technology—creating a unique mix of capabilities to address today’s interrelated development challenges. FHI 360 serves more than 70 countries and all U.S. states and territories. FHI 360 currently houses the Secretariat of the GHP, and its predecessor organization was a founder of the GHP.

The London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine

Since its founding in 1899, the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine (LSHTM) has been a leader in education and research in the global health field. Their mission is to improve health worldwide by translating technical knowledge into real world solutions. The LSHTM’s involvement with GHP is led by Dr. Valerie Curtis. An accomplished researcher, Dr. Curtis’ contributions to the handwashing sector are vast. For instance, she has studied the relationship between human behavior and marketing to promote handwashing in the seminal SuperAmma  campaign.

Procter and Gamble

P&G believe that before they can serve the world’s remaining consumers profitably, they can reach them altruistically through social responsibility programs, improving their lives in ways that enable them to thrive, to increase their quality of living and, over time, to join the population of consumers they serve with P&G brands. P&G, through its brand Safeguard, and its design agency Landor Associates, created the Global Handwashing Day mascot ‘Better Together’ featuring Soap, Hand and Water, a design which went on to win a 2009 Bronze Lion at the Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival.


UNICEF is the United Nations Children’s Fund. UNICEF’s work is carried out in 191 countries through country programs and National Committees. Their programs help to promote handwashing and hygiene behavioral change by: advocating for increased funding for hygiene activities and the inclusion of hygiene in sectoral policies and strategies; supporting national & sub-national handwashing campaigns; including strong hygiene components within its own WASH programs in the field; ensuring that handwashing and hygiene are components of emergency response programs; developing strategies and tools to encourage handwashing promotion by community health & outreach workers; encouraging hygiene promotion in schools and the empowerment of children as agents of change within their families and communities.


For Unilever, sustainability is integral to how they do business. By 2020, they aim to help more than a billion people to improve their health and well-being. Their brand Lifebuoy aims to make a difference by creating accessible hygiene products (soap) and promoting healthy hygiene habits.  With this in mind, Lifebuoy aims to change the handwashing behavior of 1 billion people across Asia, Africa and Latin America by 2015. The Lifebuoy Handwashing Behavior Change Program was launched in 2010. Handwashing behavior change programs are now central to Lifebuoy plans in all countries where the Lifebuoy brand is present, with hygiene promotion activities fully embedded into brand activities on an on-going basis.


USAID is the lead U.S. government agency that works to end extreme global poverty and enable resilient, democratic societies to realize their potential. As a founding partner of the GHP in 2001, USAID is a key stakeholder in the partnership. Through funding, advocating for hygiene, and providing technical expertise through USAID’s Bureau for Global Health, the Agency has leveraged its relationship with the GHP and partners to make significant progress on improving hygiene in communities around the world. 

The Water and Sanitation Program at the World Bank

The Water and Sanitation Program (WSP) is a multi-donor partner- ship, part of the World Bank Group’s Water Global Practice, supporting poor people in obtaining affordable, safe, and sustainable access to water and sanitation services. They work directly with client governments at the local and national level in 25 countries through regional offices in Africa, East & South Asia, Latin America & the Caribbean, and in Washington, D.C.

The Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Coalition

The Water Supply and Sanitation Collaborative Council (WSSCC) is a global multi-stakeholder partnership and membership organization that works to save lives and improve livelihoods. It does so by enhancing collaboration among sector agencies and professionals who are working to improve access for the 2.5 billion people without safe sanitation and the 783 million people without clean drinking water. Through its work, WSSCC contributes to the broader goals of poverty eradication, health and environmental improvement, gender equality and long-term social and economic development. WSSCC has coalitions in more than 20 countries, members in more than 160 countries, and a Geneva-based Secretariat which is a unit of the United Nations Office for Project Services (UNOPS).

Global Handwashing Partnership Strategic Partners

Strategic Partners provide a financial contribution and/or other resources to support the work of the GHP on at least one occasion. They support the promotion and practice of handwashing with soap to prevent infections and save lives as an international development priority. They engage in handwashing promotion activities, including around Global Handwashing Day.

Dow Chemical

Dow Chemical joined the GHP as a strategic partner inPrint 2014.  Dow combines the power of science and technology to passionately innovate what is essential to human progress. The Company is driving innovations that extract value from the intersection of chemical, physical and biological sciences to help address many of the world’s most challenging problems such as the need for clean water, clean energy generation and conservation, and increasing agricultural productivity. Dow’s integrated, market-driven, industry-leading portfolio of specialty chemical, advanced materials, agrosciences and plastics businesses delivers a broad range of technology-based products and solutions to customers in approximately 180 countries and in high-growth sectors such as packaging, electronics, water, coatings and agriculture.

University at Buffalo

The University at Buffalo is a premier research-intensive public university, a flagship institution in the State University of New York system and its largest and most comprehensive campus. UB is a leader and an innovator in higher education and in beneficial discoveries. Their work in education, research, and service is guided by our mission to improve the quality of life for the people of our region and to the world at large. The Department of Epidemiology and Environmental Health focuses on understanding the determinants and prevention of disease, on the role of environmental factors in health and disease and how the administration of health programs can help implement this understanding. The University’s interests in handwashing include examining the health effects of hand hygiene, developing new and more effective hand hygiene interventions and measurement methods, and evaluating the effectiveness of at-scale interventions. The University at Buffalo provides in-kind and research support to the GHP.

Global Handwashing Partnership Members

A wide range of organizations partner with us to achieve different aspects of our mission of universal handwashing promotion and practice. Are you interested in learning more about GHP membership? Contact us for more information!

Action Against Hunger

Action Against Hunger tackles the causes and effects of hunger and diseases that threaten the lives of vulnerable children, women and men. Established in France in 1979, it is a nongovernmental, non-political, non-religious, nonprofit organization. Action Against Hunger acts either during the crisis through emergency interventions, or afterwards through rehabilitation and sustainable development programs. It also intervenes early to prevent certain high-risk situations. Its goal is to enable people to regain their autonomy and self-sufficiency as quickly as possible.

Banka BioLoo

Banka BioLoo promotes and delivers BL logoWASH solutions and services in India. The company actively champions handwashing by providing eco-friendly bioloos, handpumps, and wash basins. Their focus is school sanitation and the BioLoo team works with large companies to promote WASH interventions in schools through corporate social responsibility.


The DefeatDD (Defeat Diarrheal Disease) Initiative, a project of PATH, promotes integrated conversations to break the poo taboo and defeat a leading global killer of children. Through their website and social media channels, DefeatDD advocates for a combined prevention and treatment approach, including vaccines, oral rehydration salts (ORS)/zinc, WASH, nutrition, and breastfeeding.


Essity is committed to the long-term goal of improving hygiene  standards around the world through dialogue and programs that lead to behavior change. Millions of people use Essity products daily, and as one of the largest hygiene and health companies in the world, they recognize their responsibility to raise awareness of the undeniable link between hygiene and overall health and well-being. Raising awareness about critical hygiene issues, such as the importance of hand sanitation and handwashing in limiting the spread of infections and disease, is a vital step to addressing these challenges and improving hygiene standards around the world. No one, no matter who they are or where they live, should have to suffer physically or mentally due to insufficient hygiene.

Global Soap

Global Soap promotes handwashing by providinggs-logo other NGOs that work in WASH with soap they collect and recycle. They also provide handwashing education materials to their in-country partners and undertake studies on handwashing behavior modification. New initiatives include supporting local soapmakers & salespeople through eight micro-loans in seven countries. Global Soap also promotes handwashing on a regular basis through its social media outlets.


icddr,b is a Bangladesh-based international health research icddrb-logo_ochre_webinstitute that strives to solve key public health problems through high quality scientific research and innovation. Policy makers and practitioners utilize icddr,b’s evidence and expertise to improve  health outcomes and prevent premature death and disability worldwide. Established more than 50 years ago, icddr,b continues to provide life-saving services to the people of Bangladesh, and to nurture the next generation of global health leaders.


IRC is an international think-and-do tank that works with NGOs, governments,IRC_withstrapline_RGB_300px entrepreneurs, and people around the world to find long-term solutions to the global crisis in WASH services. At the heart of its mission is the aim to move from short-term interventions to sustainable WASH services. With over 45 years of experience, IRC runs projects in more than 25 countries and large-scale programs in 7 focus countries in Africa, Asia, and Latin America.


Medentech is an Irish company with global reach. Medentech is committed to improving health globally by increasing drinking water quality and reducing surface contamination. For the last 30 years, Medentech has been doing this by developing, manufacturing, and marketing cost effective disinfection solutions. This includes, of course, finding innovative methods to disinfect hands.

SoapBox Soaps

SoapBox was founded in 2010 with a simple mission: to empowersbs-logo consumers to change the world through everyday, quality purchases. For every product sold, the company gives back through bar soaps and health and hygiene initiatives in communities both domestically and abroad. SoapBox works with local nonprofits in countries all over the world to start soap-making businesses, fund soap recycling initiatives, teach hygiene education and give bars of soap purchased in local marketplaces.


SoaPen Inc. aims to make handwashing a lifelong habit through playful intervention and spread awareness about the importance of handwashing. A fun teaching tool, SoaPen is a markable soap for handwashing. Its unique soap composition allows children to draw on their dry hands and in removing the traces of this drawing, they wash their hands for the ideal span of 20-40 seconds. Thus, ensuring thorough handwashing. Children and caretakers can easily carry their SoaPen with them on-the-go, making sure a handwash is never overlooked!


SpaTap portable tap is a silicone device that converts any bottle into a water-saving tap, instantly providing a handwashing station anywhere. Ingeniously, a soap caddy is formed by utilizing the base of the bottle, allowing ease of access for soap bars and a place where soap can dry when not being used. SpaTap is simple to use and install by children, and studies have shown they take ownership of it, making handwashing fun and something they want to do without being asked. The SpaTap company’s focus is school sanitation and medical facilities, and actively promotes handwashing by working with corporates and NGOs to support WASH interventions in schools. SpaTap is the 1st prize winner of Standard Banks Water4Africa 2015 and the Australian Governments Humanitarian Supplies Challenge 2017.


Splash is a nonprofit enterprise dedicated to bringing water, sanitation, and hygiene solutions to children living in urban poverty in Asia and Africa. Today, Splash is serving clean water to more than 400,000 kids across eight countries. Filtration alone can’t stave off water-borne illness. Behavior change is critical. For those lessons to last, Splash focuses on providing an enabling environment, implementing child-centered learning and incorporating nudges as a subconscious trigger towards good hygiene practices. Splash designs their programs to be locally appropriate—and fun. Experiential learning is key. No textbook, alone, can do the job. Kids giggle, sing and learn as they gain hands-on practice and learn about the health impact of unclean hands – and what they can do to promote healthy behaviors in others.

Vaccine Ambassadors

Vaccine Ambassadors is a 501(c)(3), created by healthcareva-logo providers and advocates of children’s health who believe that opportunity begins with good health, and that access to vaccines is a basic human right for all. Vaccine Ambassadors leverages the goodwill of individuals and organizations to become partners in this important global health initiative by supporting immunization services. Its mission is to work with partners to achieve equitable access and uptake of life-saving vaccines for everyone—one vaccine at a time, one community at a time.

The Secretariat

The administrative work of the GHP is undertaken by a Secretariat, which is currently housed at FHI 360 in Washington, D.C. The Secretariat facilitates delivery of the GHP strategy including developing materials, sharing lessons and resources, and connecting organizations that promote handwashing with soap.

Meet our Secretariat

Carolyn Moore, Secretariat Director, leads the partnership’s strategy in advocacy, thought leadership, and dissemination of best practices and innovation. Carolyn has a background in maternal and child health, digital health, health education, and community development.

Bijan Manavizadeh, Program Officer, supports the Secretariat’s work on knowledge leadership & hygiene advocacy programs, leads the GHP’s Global Handwashing Day planning efforts, and provides administrative support. He specializes in behavior change communication and has a passion for global health and international development.

Join Us

Our members come from a range of backgrounds and areas of expertise. Learn how to join us here.

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What We Do

Our work focuses on advocacy and knowledge leadership.

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