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Harpic and Sesame Workshop India joins hands to raise awareness around healthy toilet habits among children


NEW DELHI, OCT 27, 2022

Harpic, the leading brand in the lavatory care category, has partnered with Sesame Workshop India, the educational non-profit working for the early developmental needs of young children for its campaign, Harpic Mission Swachhta and Paani. The partnership aims to promote positive sanitation and hygiene knowledge and behaviours among children and families through schools and communities, engaging with 17.5 million children across India. The programme aims to raise awareness and reinforce healthy toilet and bathroom habits among young children, developing and recognising them as “Swachhta Champions”.

Almost 241 million preschool and school-age children in India are estimated to be at risk of infection from worms and an average of 4.73 – 17.84% of students are absent almost every day, either chronically or occasionally. Sesame Workshop India has a history of impacting children’s attitude and behaviours by using their colourful and furry muppet characters – Elmo, Raya, Chamki, Cookie Monster who are globally loved and known for championing critical issues facing children by being their role model. Sesame Workshop India’s initiatives themed on water; sanitation & hygiene are quintessential in maximising awareness about following good hygiene practices amongst children.

Talking about the partnership Ravi Bhatnagar, Director, External Affairs & Partnerships, SOA, Reckitt said, “It is important to address the issue of water for hygiene and sanitation with children in their formative years. Raising awareness on the right to a safe toilet is imperative. Habits like using the toilet for bio activities, leaving the toilet clean for the next person, washing hands frequently are habits that should be inculcated in children right at the onset. Sesame with its muppets and carefully curated books and different formats of learning is the ideal partner to help us engage with children and take the message of toilet hygiene and sanitation to help build healthy habits at an early stage.”

Commenting on the support, Sonali Khan, Managing Director, Sesame Workshop India, said, “The most effective way to drive behaviour change is by leading it with positive examples and through our partnership with Reckitt, we hope to scale the impact. We are committed to promote positive sanitation and hygiene knowledge, attitudes and behaviours amongst children and families. With the generous support from Reckitt, we aim to improve awareness on advantages of clean and safer toilets for all, shift in toilet habits and attitudes via an innovative sanitation curriculum for children.”

Aligned with the Swachh Bharat mission and UN Sustainable Development Goals, Harpic Mission Swachhta and Paani is committed towards creating an ecosystem addressing the need for water for hygiene and sanitation. This partnership with one of the critical focus elements of the campaign is building awareness on ‘Safer Toilets For All’. In addition, care for others whether it is leaving the bathroom clean or taking care that one uses the toilet properly is an imperative.

Commenting on this partnership, Saurabh Jain, Regional Marketing Director- Hygiene, South Asia at Reckitt said, “As a global leader in the toilet care category, Harpic is looking to play a significant role in driving the proper and most hygienic toilet and bathroom habits in all. Harpic with its partners is helping people embrace improved sanitation and follow superior hygiene practices. Our partnership with Sesame stresses on addressing toilet hygiene and sanitation gaps in children with the intent of creating a future in India where everyone has access to a hygienic, clean toilet.”

Considering that India is home to more than 26 crore children in the age group of 6-18 years across all the states, more investments in the programs covering water, sanitation and hygiene will have an immediate, direct, and positive impact on India’s health goals. In the long run, it will support effective social functioning and overall development including economic development of the country. Sesame Workshop India has already been engaging with children below the age of 8 across homes, classrooms and communities with content and programs on early literacy and numeracy, WASH and hygiene, nutrition, and gender equality.

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