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Published on: 25/10/2021

Global Handwashing Day was celebrated in Addis Ababa, at Atse Neakuteleab Primary school on October 20, 2021.

In his opening speech, the State Minister of Health, Dr Dereje Duguma, stated that handwashing is a solution for the country’s health, social and economic problems. He indicated that the main cause of children’s illnesses is related to diarrhoea and more than 40% of children’s diarrhoeal diseases are caused by poor hand hygiene.

Also, Dr Dereje said that during the current COVID-19 pandemic, handwashing is very important to reduce the spread of the disease. He asserted that handwashing could also reduce 21% of pneumonia cases in the country.

Demonstrating how to wash your hands properly

“The major cause of pupils’ absence is also related to diarrhoeal disease, and it has an impact on a pupil’s performance. The time and money that people invest in treating the illness have also an economic and social impact. So, poor handwashing is not only a health issue, but also a social and economic issue,’’ Dr Dereje said.

The Ministry of Health invited different Civil Society Organizations for the event and IRC Ethiopia was one of them.

The celebration included a children’s song on handwashing, a handwashing demonstration, and a comedy show on the theme. Government officials, development partners, students, teachers, and journalists from different media channels attended the ceremony.

Schoolchildren singing songs about handwashing

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