Jan 5, 2009, 8:30 AM
The commemoration was done in a form of hand-washing demonstration and health hygienic talks in five different schools within the municipality.
The schools were Janet International Primary School, Janet International Nursery School, Bakoteh Proper Lower Basic School, Little Acorns Nursery and Primary School, and Child Concern International School.
According to the organizers, the theme for this year’s occasion is “Power is in your hand” and the programme attracted hundreds of volunteers as they were demonstrating the importance of hand washing before and after eating, as well as after using the toilet, for protection from any bacterial infections.
As part of activities marking the event, YCFB also donated books worth thousands of dalasis to the beneficiary schools.
Ms Anna Asante, Water and Sanitation Project officer, said YCFB is a public interest-based organization striving to improve the welfare of Gambian children, particularly for those in the project target areas, including the youth and women in reproductive age.
The objective of the project was to sensitize the schoolchildren and teachers on the importance of hand washing with soap and water, “which is the most inexpensive way of keeping our lives healthy”.
According to her, the project was solely funded from membership contribution to ensure the activities were carried out successfully.
“We have not secured any support or funding from any donor or institution to embark on this important activity,” she emphasised.
She then used the opportunity to call on government, NGOs, philanthropists and the business community to support them as they have series of planned activities to implement in the interest of Gambian children and youth.
For his part, Fred Efosa Omobude, director of Youth Children Foundation Bakoteh, said the organisation is a charitable one, based in Bakoteh in the Kanifing Municipality. It is aimed at supporting the welfare of youth and children, thus complementing government’s efforts in achieving its targets.
He said Global Hand Washing Day is celebrated on 15 October annually, but this year it coincided with the ‘Tobaski’ feast.
Every participant did receive advice to ensure they teach their friends and families the importance of hand washing with soap, and the teachers are expected to continue to remind the children the importance of hand washing with soap, to prevent diseases.
While urging the beneficiaries to make the best use of the donated materials, he said the gesture was part of their efforts at contributing to nation-building.
Ms Sainabou Jobe of Bakoteh Proper Lower Basic School, Mr Lorence Hans of Child Concern and Mr Famous David of Little Acorns Nursery and Primary School all spoke at length on the importance of a healthy child.
Children are the future of the country and must learn all the good practices to ensure they become healthy and responsible elders, they said.
They also commended YCFB for their initiative and assured them that all what was learnt from the sensitization will be put into practice and the donated books will be used accordingly.