SOS Children’s Villages of India conducts a ‘handwash’ awareness drive in Bhubaneswar to enhance awareness on health and hygiene

Bhubaneswar: SOS Children’s Villages of India, the largest self-implementing childcare NGO in the country, conducted an awareness drive on handwashing in Bhubaneswar, Orissa.
Around 275 children of the ‘Balpanchayat’ organised a handwashing awareness drive in 11 communities including Daspur, Mahimangar, Pitagadia BhoiSahi, Kujimahal, Bhola, Dalua, Jamujhari, Binjhagiri, Chhatabar, Krushnanagar and Chudang. Awareness was created on washing hands the right way, wearing face masks, disposal of used masks and following social distancing norms.
The initiative was organised and implemented by the ‘Balpanchayat’, youth representatives, Self Help Group members, tutors and animators. Health care experts trained the children on hand hygiene through online classes. Children diligently followed the guidance of the experts, without missing a single class. Having received the necessary training, the children pro-actively took the lead and educated their communities on handwashing as a measure to counter COVID-19, and keep other infections and diseases at bay. Two healthcare professionals (a doctor and counsellor), local Asha workers, among others, were also present during the drive.
Mr. Sumanta Kar, Secretary General, SOS Children’s Villages of India, said: “We are pleased that the ‘Balpanchayat’ took the lead in creating awareness about hand hygiene. While we helped in organising the awareness drive and bringing together all key stakeholders, we would not have succeeded in educating so many communities on hand hygiene, without the help of the ‘Balpanchayat’. We hope that the communities will continue to follow hand hygiene measures and help in preventing the spread of COVID-19, as well as keeping preventable diseases at bay.”
The awareness drive was a success, with families of children adopting handwashing as a part of their daily hygiene routine. The handwash awareness drive in Bhubaneswar follows a similar initiative taken by the NGO in Bawana, Delhi, amongst other places.