The northern mountainous province of Hoa Binh has benefited from a project to promote hand washing practice, it was reported at a meeting in the locality on January 3.

Sponsored by the Unilever Vietnam Fund, the “Hand washing with soap for a healthier Vietnam ” project was implemented since May, 2012, in Cao Son and Tu Ly communes of mountainous Da Bac district.

Within one year, the project distributed more than 17,000 bars of soap to households, nursing mothers, schools and healthcare centres. Seven conferences and courses have been held to guide nearly 300 teachers and local officials how to persuade people adopt the hygienic practice.

Project workers had come to local schools to teach around 1,000 primary and secondary students about the benefits of cleansing hands with soap and how to wash their hands properlyto limit diseases transmission. Local families in the two communes were also encouraged to build sanitation facilities.

As a result, the number of hygienic lavatories and water supply facilities in the target areas were up 10.26 percent and 4.87 percent, respectively, from 2011. Ethnic students have also got into the habit of washing hands with soap, thus reducing cases suffering from digestive diseases.

In 2014, the project is set to be expanded to Da Bac town and Toan Son commune.-VNA