Global Handwashing Day (GHD) is a campaign aimed to create awareness among the people to wash their hands with soap. GHD is observed on October 15th of every year since 2008.
The Theme for 2014 GHD is Clean Hands Save Lives.
Handwashing with soap is the most effective & cheapest way to prevent diarrheal & acute respiratory infections such as pneumonia, which take the lives of millions of children in many under developed and developing countries. Handwashing with soap is a way for everyone to take health into their own hands.
Diarrhea and pneumonia together account for almost 3.5 million child deaths annually. These diseases cause almost 5,000 childhood deaths every day, according to UNICEF, and the simple habit of handwashing can significantly reduce the risk of contracting these illnesses, by almost one-half in the case of diarrhea and by nearly one-quarter for acute respiratory infections.
Global Handwashing Day was initiated by The Global Public-Private Partnership for Handwashing (PPPHW) (www.globalhandwashing.org) on October 15th 2008, mobilizing 120 million children in 73 countries across five continents to wash their hands with soap. Today it is endorsed and commemorated by governments, international institutions, civil society organizations, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), private companies, and individuals around the globe.