Iceland funds UNICEF’s hand washing campaign in 600 Ugandan schoolsDr. Munir Safieldin, UNICEF Representative and Ms. Thordis Sigurdardottir, Head of Mission, Embassy of Iceland, sign the financial agreements after announcement of the contribution during a brief event at the UNICEF office
The Republic of Iceland has given UNICEF USD300,000 to provide hand washing facilities and supplies to 400 government-aided primary and secondary schools across the country, part of efforts to control the transmission of COVID-19.
Another 200 schools previously supported by UNICEF will also receive Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) supplies only. The supplies to be given to the 600 schools include liquid soap, bleach, boots, gloves, cleaning mops, sprayers, and alcohol-based sanitizers. The benefiting schools are expected to ensure availability of water and manpower for cleaning of school facilities and hygiene promotion.
The schools will also receive several posters reminding school children about the importance of personal hygiene and handwashing with soap and clean water.
“In Uganda, the COVID-19 pandemic has had adverse effects on health, learning, and livelihoods of communities. The WHO and CDC emphasize handwashing with soap as a practice that could protect about 1 out of every 3 young children who get sick with diarrhoea and 1 out of 5 young children with respiratory infections including COVID-19. This improves school attendance leading to improved child development,” said Þórdís Sigurðardóttir, Head of Mission, Embassy of Iceland.
Schools have been open in Uganda since January 2022. Availability of adequate water, sanitation and hygiene facilities are key to ensuring they remain open.
“Inadequate WASH services in schools and communities can result into poor health and increase several diseases like diarrhoea, infections, malnutrition, water-borne diseases among others which all hinder the growth of children. With this additional funding from the Iceland Government, UNICEF will contribute to the reduction of water-borne and poor hygiene related diseases in 600 schools,” said Dr. Munir Safieldin, UNICEF Representative in Uganda.