100,000 pupils to benefit from hygiene awareness

Good practice: Learning proper hand washing techniques is the key to breaking the chain of infection.

EDUCATING the young on proper methods to wash their hands and keep good hygiene should be routine training.

Federation of Private Medical Practitioners’ Associations Malaysia (FPMPAM) president Dr Steven Chow said washing hands and maintaining a standard of hygiene is the most cost-effective way of preventing diseases such as dire illnesses and respiratory infection which are more common in rural areas.

Dr Chow, who is also the FPMPAM-Dettol public education partnership programme chairman, was speaking during the Purpose Programme 2022 launch on Jan 27.

The Dettol Malaysia public awareness programme, which aims to educate schoolchildren on how to practise and retain hygiene habits from a young age, is targeted at 100,000 pupils aged between seven and nine.

The programme, which has been constructed to drive behavioural change and create lasting hygiene habits, will include a series of educational sessions that targets the cognitive development stage of children.

Held in collaboration with the Education Ministry, the programme comprising creative activities demonstrating hygienic concepts, as well as a range of curriculum modules using short animated episodes, comics, lesson plans and activities to deliver its learning objectives, was rolled out to more than 400 primary schools nationwide starting Jan 17.

The comprehensive course was developed by leading global educational partners with a measurement framework in place for maximum impact.

Dettol brand ambassador Dr Say Shazril said learning lifelong habits like good hand hygiene will benefit future generations.

“I am thrilled that a programme like this is finally being rolled out in schools, more importantly at the primary school level.

“I hope we will be able to reach out to more than 100,000 pupils so that more are exposed to the importance of keeping their hands clean at all times,” he added.

Reckitt Malaysia, Singapore and Vietnam regional general manager Gonzalo Balcazar said pupils will be provided with user-friendly materials and the sessions will be held face to face.

Reckitt Malaysia is a distributor of Dettol Malaysia’s products.

“We will have virtual training sessions for teachers to guide them in teaching their pupils in an engaging way.

“This programme is focused on primary pupils as they will carry these good practices into their teenagehood and adulthood,” he said.

He added that children are powerful agents of change who can use their powers of persuasion to take messages back to their parents and wider communities.

With the right support and interventions, we can significantly boost child development, helping them to grow, learn and foster daily practices that can translate into permanent habitual change, Balcazar said.

“This is why it is so important that we begin the nurturing and education process in the early stages of life where healthy habits are adopted, and hand hygiene practice becomes second nature,” he added.

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