SOAP FOR HYGIENE – HYGIENE FOR HEALTH
Three billion people - 40% of the world's population - have no way to wash their hands with soap and water in their homes. Even where they are needed most, hand hygiene infrastructure is lacking: almost half of all schools worldwide do not have hand-washing facilities with water and soap, affecting around 900 million schoolchildren. In addition, recent months have been a strong reminder that one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of infectious diseases is also one of the simplest: hand hygiene.
This issue plays a central role in WfW's work because washing hands with clean water and soap is an effective measure for better health and equity. In addition to providing the necessary access to clean water, WfW uses locally produced soaps in Mozambican primary schools and their neighbouring districts to implement effective handwashing and thus reduce the transmission of preventable diseases.
Since 2018, over 100,000 soaps have been used in schools and neighbourhoods in Maputo through WfW projects. In 2021 alone, WfW has provided 50 schools in Maputo with soaps, improving hygiene standards for over 95,000 students.
FAIR PRODUCTION, NATURAL INGREDIENTS
To meet our need for soaps in an ecological and socially responsible way, it is important for WfW that they are produced under fair conditions, locally and with all-natural ingredients. Initially, WfW sourced its soaps from a large multinational corporation whose production was in Malaysia and whose ingredients contained a large proportion of palm oil from monocultures - an unsatisfactory situation that pushed WfW to look for alternatives.
The soap start-up from the Mozambican capital Maputo relies on local, renewable and biodegradable ingredients in the production of their coconut oil-based products and manufactures them by hand with a local team. With an annual demand for over 20,000 soaps, WfW quickly became the start-up's largest customer, contributing significantly to its growth and professionalisation.
SOCIAL BUSINESS MODEL
Now WfW would like to support the development of this soap start-up even more actively and contribute to consolidating the young company as an established and fair soap production. A social business model is not about maximising profits, but an economic concept to solve social and ecological problems. This is also the case with WfW in Maputo:
All profits are reinvested in production or flow into WfW's programme work, with the aim of sustainably improving hygiene standards at primary schools in Maputo.
Soap production is intended to strengthen the local value chain and create fair jobs. So far, seven people are already working at the start-up.
Thanks to the use of purely natural ingredients, the ecosystem and water cycle are not negatively impacted.
To expand this social soap production, WfW needs start-up funding. For this purpose, WfW will launch a crowdfunding, whereby all supporters can contribute financially to this project as an "enabling crowd". The crowdfunding will be launched at the Solidarity Party on 30 April 2022, with all proceeds from the evening going directly into the development of the social soap production.
Will you come along and support us? You can find more information here.