Manila Water Foundation (MWF) welcomed the new school year by teaching close to a thousand pupils from Metro Manila the seven steps of proper handwashing.
As most Filipino students returned to school in June, MWF committed to making the new academic year a healthy one. Its Health in Our Hands (HiOH) program is a year-round campaign teaching kids about the value of staying healthy through proper handwashing with soap and clean water. This year hundreds of grade schoolers were already taught about the importance of this habit.
The HiOH series was kicked off at Malaya Elementary School where pupils and teachers enjoyed the fun and interactive activities, including a lecture demonstration and actual application of the seven steps of handwashing.
This was followed by another event at Project 6 Elementary School, also at Quezon City, where more than 500 schoolchildren from various grade levels participated and pledged to make handwashing part of their lifestyle.
Leading the call for this commitment is MWF Water Education Program Manager, Ms. Janie Rose Ilustre-Alfonso, who urged everyone to practice proper handwashing to help prevent the spread of communicable diseases.
“Maraming sakit ang maaari nating maipasa at makuha kung hindi tayo maghuhugas ng kamay. Ito ay maaaring maging sanhi ng pagliban sa klase ng mga mag-aaral na maaaring makaapekto sa kanilang academic performance. Kaya naman nandito kami at ang programang Health in Our Hands upang ibahagi sa mga kabataan ang tamang pamamaraan ng paghuhugas ng kamay gamit ang sabon at malinis na tubig,” she said.
(Diseases can spread if we don’t wash our hands properly. These can lead to frequent absenteeism of students that can affect their academic performance. Thus, we are bringing the Health in Our Hands program to schools to teach the youth about the proper way to wash hands using soap and clean water.)
After the said events in Quezon City, MWF capped the first month of the school year by participating in the Makati Sanitation Day. This event was led by the Makati Health Department and was made possible in partnership with the Department of Environment Services and Manila Water Company’s Advocacy and Research Department. Hundreds of pupils, teachers, and government employees are now officially part of the Healthy Hands Squad, a troop of ambassadors who commit to share the value of proper handwashing to others.
By bringing the HiOH program to schools, students, teachers, and their community are not only protected from disease-causing bacteria. They are also empowered to take control of their health by practicing a simple habit such as handwashing.