'Wash your hands' - Mayor

October 19, 2015, 10:29am


Children of the impoverished DRC informal settlement in Swakopmund on Saturday commemorated Global Handwashing Day, during which they were encouraged to wash their hands with soap.

The Global Handwashing Day was initiated by the Public Private Partnership for Handwashing (PPPHW) at the commemoration of World Water Week in 2008.

The day is commemorated on 15 October each year and is dedicated to increasing awareness and understanding of the importance of washing hands with soap as an easy, effective and affordable way to prevent infections and diseases and save lives, particularly among children.

Speaking to about 100 children and other community members, Swakopmund Mayor Nehemia Salomon said the commemoration is taking place in DRC where hygiene is at a critical stage.

Most DRC residents don't have access to proper ablution facilities, with some using pit latrines, while access to clean water is only available at four public taps currently shared by about 200 000 residents. "Even though you do not have enough water, please use the little that you have to wash your hands with soap after using the toilet, after shaking hands and before eating," said the mayor.

Salomon promised that the Swakopmund Town Council will ensure that projects aimed at bringing toilets, water and housing to DRC are sped up.

The mayor stressed that hygiene cannot only be left to the town council but should start with the people themselves, especially parents who can teach children the benefits of personal hygiene.

Children and parents who attended the event were advised to pass on the message to those not present. At the event, children were shown how to properly wash their hands with soap. They were later treated to a meal.