Global Handwashing Day is a worldwide advocacy day dedicated to increasing awareness and understanding about the importance of handwashing with soap as an effective and affordable way to prevent diseases.

Handwashing is essential for strong healthcare systems. In a survey of healthcare facilities in 54 countries, the World Health Organization and UNICEF recently found that 35% did not have soap and water for handwashing. This represents a serious risk to both patients and healthcare providers. Good hygiene is necessary for good nutrition, particularly for children in the first 1,000 days of life. And, handwashing stations in schools can both help reduce absenteeism and enable girls to manage their menstrual cycles safely and with dignity.