Essar Foundation Odisha, as a contribution to the Swachh Bharat Abhiyaan, launched the ‘Clean Hands Campaign’ on 26th November, 2016, to promote cleanliness through the practice of washing hands. The campaign, which ended in January recently, has a multipronged outreach, with Government Anganwadi centres, Primary and Middle schools in the surrounding villages of Essar Steel India Limited, Paradeep and Dabuna locations. The two-month long campaign has made a significant progress in terms of bringing about a behavioral change among the students in these villages, and Anganwadi going children, as well as, among teachers and parents.
The first phase of the campaign started at Dabuna, Keonjhar covering all ICDS units, Primary, Upper Primary & Middle Schools of Khajuridihi, Katupali, Purunadihi and Dabuna villages. The purpose was to demonstrate, reinforce and inculcate clean habits among the children. The hand washing programme was arranged right before mealtime. Every day, the young students get a meal from the ICDS centres and schools under the Government Midday Meal scheme. Essar Foundation undertook sessions on hand-washing and demonstrated the steps of doing so, in a manner that makes it easy for children to adopt the practice. After the session children followed the steps to practice how to wash their hands correctly. Over 300 children, teachers, ASHA (Health volunteers), ANM (Auxiliary Nurse and Midwives), Anganwadi workers and parents took part in the ‘Clean Hands’ campaign. The teachers and Anganwadi workers are currently devising methods to carry follow up activities and practice sessions for hand-washing to keep up the momentum.
The ‘Clean Hands’ campaign started on 26th November 2016 at Paradeep covering seven Anganwadi centers at Nuagarh, Musadiha, Singitali, Chakardharpur, Barei, Bhimanashi and Ghorodi villages and reached out to 412 children and their guardians. It was led by Dr Niranjan Dwivedy along with the Mobile Medical Unit (MMU) Team at Paradip. The Government Anganwadi workers, ASHA, ANM and MMU team mobilised the children to wash their hands correctly, in a playful manner. The doctor and paramedic staff addressed the children and demonstrated the hand-washing technique in six easy steps and got the children to practice it a few times.