Lifebuoy REDUCES DIARRHOEA from 36% to 5% in THESGORA

Lifebuoy REDUCES DIARRHOEA from 36% to 5% in THESGORA

Unilever’s health soap Lifebuoy today announced the results of its Help a Child Reach 5 handwashing programme launched in Thesgora, India, noting an overwhelming drop in incidence of diarrhoea from 36% to 5%[1]. Kajol Devgn, actor and handwashing ambassador revealed the results and Sanjiv Mehta, CEO and MD, Hindustan Unilever Limited announced the campaign will scale up to reach 45 million people in India.

The decrease in diarrhoea in this village – known for having one of the highest rates in India of this deadly yet preventable disease – was observed over the period of Lifebuoy’s intervention in an independent evaluation of 1485 households with children aged below 12 years, conducted by Nielsen in September 2013.

Lifebuoy’s Help A Child Reach 5 campaign aims to eradicate preventable deaths from diseases like diarrhoea one village at a time, by teaching lifesaving handwashing habits. The campaign was launched with an award winning film and handwasing initiatives in Thesgora, a village in Madhya Pradesh with one of the highest rates of diarrhoea in India. These results show that the handwashing programmes had significant positive impact on handwashing behavior and health of the community.

Kajol said, “My journey with ‘Help A Child Reach Five’ started last year as we began with spreading awareness. I advocated for handwashing with soap with the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and other policymakers at the UN General Assembly, and on Indian TV and digital media. The outstanding results of ‘Help A Child Reach 5’ campaign in Thesgora gives us even more confidence that children can survive by inculcating the simple habit of hand washing with soap”.

Sanjeev Mehta, CEO & Managing Director, Hindustan Unilever Ltd. said, “Lifebuoy Help a Child Reach 5 has demonstrated excellent results in Thesgora and will scale up this campaign to reach 45 million people in India. The results of Lifebuoy’s efforts so far prove that when a social mission is embedded into a successful brand’s core values, significant and indeed lifesaving change can happen fast. So far, Lifebuoy has impacted hand washing behaviours of 183 million people in 16 countries and 58 million people in India.”

Worldwide, 1 child dies from diarrhoea or pneumonia every 15 seconds- which is 2.1 million deaths each year. In India, over 6 lakh children under the age of 5 die from to pneumonia and diarrhoea annually. Handwashing with soap is the most cost effective way to prevent child deaths and contribute to Millennium Development Goal 4 (MDG4) towards reducing child mortality. Put simply, the simple but lifesaving act of handwashing with soap could help many more children reach the age of five.

About Lifebuoy

As the world’s leading health soap, Lifebuoy aims to make a difference by creating accessible hygiene products (soap) and promoting healthy hygiene habits.  With this in mind, Lifebuoy aims to change the hand washing behaviour of one billion people by 2015. Since 2010 Lifebuoy has changed the hand washing behaviours of 47 million people in India.

Lifebuoy has been synonymous with health and hygiene since it first landed on Indian shores in 1895. It has been spreading the message of health and hygiene for over 100 years, and over two thirds of India’s households use Lifebuoy at least once a year. The famous Lifebuoy jingle “Tandurusti ki raksha karta hai Lifebuoy, Lifebuoy hai jahan tandurusti hai wahan” is the health anthem of India. Lifebuoy’s Swasthya Chetna was the single largest rural health and hygiene educational programme ever undertaken in India. In the year 2006, the Indian Postal Department released a special Lifebuoy Swasthya Chetna Postal Cover in recognition of Lifebuoy’s efforts to promote health and hygiene awareness in India.

About Hindustan Unilever Ltd

Hindustan Unilever Limited (HUL) is India’s largest Fast Moving Consumer Goods company touching the lives of two out of three Indians. HUL works to create a better future every day. We help people feel good, look good and get more out of life with brands and services that are good for them and good for others.