Handwashing and ‘Help a Child Reach 5’ ambassador Kajol appeals for the cause of hygiene during the United Nations General Assembly week

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By. K Ashwin Mobile : 00919920183006 Email : indianshowbusiness@gmail.com

Kajol Devgn, actor and Lifebuoy’s ‘Help a Child Reach 5’ ambassador will highlight the importance of handwashing with soap in reducing child and new-born mortality at the 70th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA). She will appeal to policymakers for a hygiene indicator to be included in the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Together with fellow handwashing ambassador, Myanmar singer Chit Thu Wai, she will join a series of UN events in New York during UNGA week.The UNGA week brings together world leaders, key opinion formers and policy makers to discuss global issues. This year is particularly important as it marks the end of the Millennium Development Goals and the launch of the SDGs – the goals that will set the development agenda for the next 15 years, and Lifebuoy believes it is vital that hygiene is included in this. Kajol will be part of several high-profile UN events; she will attend the Global Citizen Festival, a concert in Central Park to galvanize action from governments to deliver on the SDGs. She will also attend a panel with Unilever CEO Paul Polman, who together with advocacy partners will discuss the importance of a hygiene indicator to be included in the SDGs and highlight the role of business and partnerships in achieving the SDGs.

On her way to UNGA Kajol said, “I am so proud to be associated with ‘Help a Child Reach 5’, an initiative, which is so close to my heart. I would like to take the opportunity to engage with various policymakers, international influencers and UN dignitaries and urge them to join me in this lifesaving initiative of advocating a simple habit of handwashing with soap, especially among mothers with children in the neonatal period, where more than 40% of child deaths take place. I am also calling on policymakers to include a hygiene indicator in the SDGs so that governments will keep this lifesaving habit on their development agendas and help save more lives”

Handwashing with soap is one of the most cost-effective ways to reduce preventable diseases like diarrhoea and pneumonia – the main causes of child mortality. Over 40% of under-5 deaths globally occur in the newborn period[i] (the first 28 days of life). It is critical to measure handwashing behaviour change and provide place for handwashing in schools, health centres and households.

Since 2010, Lifebuoy has changed the handwashing behaviour of 257 million people across 24 countries. During these UN events, Lifebuoy will be urging the policy makers to include a hygiene indicator in the SDGs, so that hygiene will be kept on government and development agenda in order to reduce child mortality.

About Help a Child Reach 5 campaign:

• Handwashing with soap saves lives. Lifebuoy’s ‘Help A Child Reach 5’ campaign aims to eradicate preventable deaths from diseases like diarrhoea in one village at a time, by teaching lifesaving handwashing habits.

• To drive awareness for the cause, Lifebuoy created touching films on what it means for a child to reach the age of 5: www.youtube.com/helpachildreach5

• Lifebuoy launched its ‘Help a Child Reach 5’ handwashing campaign in Thesgora, a village in Madhya Pradesh with one of the highest rates of diarrhoea in India. Lifebuoy has committed to teach Thesgora and surrounding villages to wash their hands at key occasions in a day – and to sustain this habit. The initiative will increase handwashing with soap among children, thereby reducing incidence of diarrhoea among children.

• Lifebuoy doesn’t want to stop there – it wants to expand its life-saving mission, village by village – to prevent child mortality. We will expand this initiative across villages in South and Southeast Asia, Africa and Latin America.

• Kajol, distinguished Indian actress and mother has joined the Help a Child Reach 5 campaign as a handwashing advocate

About Lifebuoy

As the world’s leading health soap, Lifebuoy aims to make a difference by creating accessible hygiene products (soap) and promoting healthy hygiene habits. We have reached out to 63 million people in India since 2010 through our handwashing programmes.

Lifebuoy has been synonymous with health and hygiene since it first landed on Indian shores in 1895. It has been spreading the message of health and hygiene for over 100 years, and over two thirds of India’s households use Lifebuoy at least once a year. Lifebuoy’s Swasthya Chetna programme was the single largest rural health and hygiene educational programme ever undertaken in India. In the year 2006, the Indian Postal Department released a special Lifebuoy Swasthya Chetna Postal Cover in recognition of Lifebuoy’s efforts to promote health and hygiene awareness in India.

About Hindustan Unilever Ltd

Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL) is India’s largest Fast Moving Consumer Goods Company with its products touching the lives of nine out of ten households in India. HUL works to create a better future every day.

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