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USL celebrates Global Handwashing Day 2013

Throughout the world, Lifebuoy has remained committed to ending preventable deaths of children under the age of five by changing their handwashing behaviours. This year, Lifebuoy has gone one step further to commit to eradicating preventable deaths from diarrhoea one village at a time. In Sri Lanka, the Lifebuoy team started with Ambokka Village in Matale as a starting point for the roll out the School of Five program, through which the brand looks to touch over 400,000 children in the next one year.

Along with millions of people around the world, Unilever Sri Lanka employees also celebrated Global Handwashing Day on October 15th, 2013. 40 employees travelled to Ambokka to participate in an event held in collaboration between Lifebuoy, the Ministry of Education, and UNICEF, at the Ambokka Primary School. Over 400 children from three schools were gathered there and were educated on the importance of handwashing, and the five significant occasions of handwashing.

A neo-natal clinic for over 125 new mothers was also conducted, and USL employees were present to raise the mothers’ awareness about the benefits of washing hands before coming into contact with their infants. This was part of the neo-natal programme that Lifebuoy is rolling out in partnership with the Ministry of Health.

Employees at USL’s Grandpass Office too participated in a Global Handwashing Day celebration, with chairman Amal Cabraal addressing them on the significance of Lifebuoy’s social mission. In a message to the employees, Human Resources Director Udayan Dutt requested employees to extend their fullest support to the program.

“Every child should live to their full potential. It is unthinkable to even imagine them falling fatally ill from a preventable disease like diarrhoea. Sadly, this is the reality that many people face. Every year, there over 1.7 billion cases of diarrhea across the world, and over two million children under 5 die from diseases like diarrhoea and pneumonia that could have been prevented,” said Udayan.

“Global Handwashing Day gives us all a chance to engage with young children and teach them healthy hand washing habits, which they can then spread to their families. Interacting first-hand with kids with our message is the start of the actions that go straight to the heart of our USLP mission.”

The ‘Help a Child Reach Five’ campaign, which was launched in Thesgora Village in India in 2013, set out to end preventable deaths of children under 5 by changing the handwashing behaviours, one village at a time. Today, Lifebuoy has confirmed it will extend this programme to communities and villages across 17 countries globally.

Unilever Sri Lanka Ltd.

258 M. Vincent Perera Mw

Colombo 14

Sri Lanka

+94 (0) 11 4700 800

communications.usl@unilever.com

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