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Washing hands fights deforestation: the Domino Effect in Gadaisu

Clean hands protect rainforest.

Let us give you an insight into the complexities of rainforest protection.

Did you know washing hands fights deforestation? Seemingly unrelated things are often intrinsically interlinked. This can make rainforest protection a real challenge – one we revel in.

Take the success of the 24 hand-washing stations you enabled in rainforest communities in Papua New Guinea.

A woman is performing maintenance to a water station in the rainforest, wearing a fluorescent tabard.

Washing hands fights deforestation. A forest monitor, performing maintenance to a water station in the New Guinea rainforest.

A not-so-radical solution of installing accessible sinks filled via rainwater, built by a skilled team of local people, has created a domino effect. One that can be replicated the world over.

So here it goes, the domino effect:

Clean hands, less illness.

Less illness, more resilient people living in rainforest to protect it.

More healthy people living in rainforest means fewer trips to expensive medical centres.

Fewer costly trips to the medical centre mean more cash security.

More cash security means less pressure to sell rainforest.

Less rainforest sold, well, you know the rest.

Washing hands fights deforestation. Four handwashing stations sit on tables under a corrugated roof, in a small clearing of rainforest.

Handwashing stations in Papua New Guinea surrounded by rainforest.

These hand-washing stations vastly improved life for over 2,500 people. Sanitation training has also been provided for 33 volunteers from eight villages including our three partner organisations as part of our wider WASH programme.

PPE, countless litres of hand sanitiser alongside education on elbow bumps and social distancing (not to mention a rapid response) has created a positive ripple effect* that will last well into the future. Washing hands fights deforestation. Not bad right?

*Want to help continue this ripple effect? Get in touch.