Only 6.2 percent of mothers and 2.7 percent of children in the country wash their hands with soap after defecation, according to a monitoring and evaluation baseline conducted by Research International (RI), a market research company.
The survey stated that handwashing with soap was still low in the country.
Mr Worlanyo Kwadjo Siabi, the Chief Executive Officer of the Community Water and Sanitation Agency (CWSA) made this known in a speech read on his behalf at a durbar to mark this year’s Global Handwashing Day (GHD) held at Goaso in the Ahafo Region.
The CWSA with support from her partners-UNICEF, Rural Water and Development Programme Ghana, Ghana Education Service, Ghana Health Service, and Coalition of NGOs in Water and Sanitation and Ghana Water and Sanitation Journalists Network (WATSAN) organised the durbar mostly attended by basic and senior high school students.
Mr Worlanyo observed that the CWSA had created national visibility awareness on handwashing with soap saying the practice of hand washing in general had increased by about 48 percent.
“The challenge has been transforming handwashing with soap from an abstract good idea into an automatic behaviour performed in homes, schools, and communities”, he said.
As a result the main aim of this year’s GHD is to shift the increased awareness towards sustainable behavioural change with focus on practice.
Mr Evans Opoku Bobie, the Ahafo Regional Minister said only 48 percent of the national population had access to Handwashing facilities.
The GHD which falls on October 15, every year was instituted by the Global Handwashing Partnership and is an opportunity to design, test, and replicate creative ways to encourage people to wash their hands with soap at critical times.
It is an annual global advocacy day dedicated to advocating handwashing with soap as an easy, effective, and affordable way to prevent diseases and save lives and the 2019 celebration is “clean hands for all – leave no one behind”.
Mr Bobie observed that hygiene promotion activities had shown improved hygiene food behaviours and reduced contamination of food.
However, most people ignore the role hgyiene plays in reducing the incidence of diseases and this had indeed brought untold hardship to a lot of people.
The Regional Minister appealed to Ghanaians to make hand washing with soap a top priority in their daily activities and to provide a better future for the young and future generations.