Global Handwashing Day

Observed: October 15, 2021

Global Handwashing Day is an annual global advocacy day dedicated to increasing awareness and understanding about the importance of handwashing with soap as an easy, effective, and affordable way to prevent diseases and save lives.

Celebrated annually on October 15, Global Handwashing Day was founded by the Global Handwashing Partnership and is an opportunity to design, test, and replicate creative ways to encourage people to wash their hands with soap at critical times.

Global Handwashing Day is designed to:

  • Foster and support a global and local culture of handwashing with soap

  • Shine a spotlight on the state of handwashing around the world

  • Raise awareness about the benefits of handwashing with soap

The first Global Handwashing Day was held in 2008 when over 120 million children around the world washed their hands with soap in more than 70 countries. Since 2008, community and national leaders have used Global Handwashing Day to spread the word about handwashing, build sinks and tippy taps, and demonstrate the simplicity and value of clean hands.  Each year, over 200 million people are involved in celebrations in over 100 countries around the world. Global Handwashing Day is endorsed by a wide array of governments, international institutions, civil society organizations, NGOs, private companies, and individuals

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