Poor access to improved water and sanitation in Nigeria remains a major contributing factor to high morbidity and mortality rates among children under five. According to UNICEF, the use of contaminated drinking water and poor sanitary conditions result in increased vulnerability to water-borne diseases, including diarrhoea which leads to deaths of more than 70,000 children under five annually.
Gold Health Initiative recently introduced a hand wash station for the children of Sharing Prosperity School, New Kuchingoro IDP camp, Abuja. Morolayo Akpuluma, Executive Director of Gold Health Initiative explained that the reason behind building hand-wash stations was for infection prevention and control. UNICEF reported that frequent episodes of water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH) related ill-health in children, contribute to absenteeism in school, and malnutrition.
“While providing handwashing facilities, awareness and behavioural change are key for the children, hence the use of a catchy pictorial step by step guide in hand washing for early remembrance,” she said. Akpumula added that Gold Health Initiative was also committed to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals 3 and 6 which focus on health and water and sanitation.