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Handwashing with soap is recognised as an easy, effective and affordable method to protect and prevent disease transmission. However, handwashing practices in humanitarian criseas are often found to be deficient and less effective than expected with many socio-cultural, technical and financial factors likely contributing to the problem.

Our WASH Gap Analysis and Problem Exploration Report on Handwashing identified priority challenges in the area of hygiene including:

  • the limited adaptability of existing hygiene promotion programmes,
  • the poor condition and design of existing handwashing stations,
  • the limited availability or lack of soap.

The Gap Analysis also further highlighted the challenge of poor menstrual hygiene provision in emergencies.

We have also produced a Challenge Candidate List, which provides a summary of the key challenges presented in the Problem Exploration Report on Handwashing.

We have prioritised innovations looking to address these particular hygiene challenges.

We have prioritised innovations looking to:

  1. Develop effective handwashing promotion strategies that lead to positive changes in behaviour;
  2. Develop alternatives to soap;
  3. Design better handwashing facilities and develop innovative approaches for deployment and maintenance;
  4. Improve menstrual hygiene provision.

WASH in Emergencies Problem Exploration Report: Handwashing

In order to achieve greater public health benefits associated with good handwashing practices, WASH actors need to identify and apply collaborative and sustainable methods to improve handwashing solutions and promotion for those affected by emergencies and humanitarian crises. Our Problem Exploration Report into Handwashing puts forward three exploration areas which would benefit from additional attention.

Read our report

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Our Hygiene Tools & Research

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Gap Analysis in Emergency Water, Sanitation and Hygiene Promotion

Tool COVID-19, Water, sanitation & hygiene

WASH Innovation Catalogue

Report Water, sanitation & hygiene

WASH in Emergencies Problem Exploration Report: Handwashing

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Article, Peer Reviewed Water, sanitation & hygiene

Evaluation of Key Antimicrobial Properties of Moringa oleifera in Relation to Its Use as a Hand-Washing Product

Report Water, sanitation & hygiene

Final Phase 1 Report: Moringa Leaves As Handwashing Product For Water And Soap Scarce Contexts

Tool Sexual and Reproductive Health

Menstrual Hygiene Management in Emergencies Toolkit

Report Sexual and Reproductive Health

Market Survey of Menstrual Hygiene Items

Report Sexual and Reproductive Health

Menstrual Hygiene Survey Project: Aruna and Adjumani District

Report Sexual and Reproductive Health

Menstrual Hygiene Management in Emergencies: Pledge-Based Report

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