Innovation That Matters

Soap crayon

Soap crayon encourages children to wash their hands

Sport & Fitness

A group of designers from India have created a hand washing tool for children to help them learn about hygiene from an early age. 

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With hygiene a global challenge and the use of hand sanitizer becoming increasingly prevalent, staying clean has never been more important. Millions of germs are being transferred by hands on a daily basis and shocking figures reveal that around 800 children die every year as a result of poor sanitary conditions.

SoaPen could be the answer to this significant problem. The soap comes in a pen shaped tool, featuring a roller ball top and twist off lid. With the aim of being portable and easy to use and fun for children, the product was developed to promote the habit of hand-washing with soap from an early age. The founders, Shubham Issar, Amanat Anand and Yogita Agrawal, met while studying in New York and were passionate about social innovation. They designed the SoaPen in the hope that it would help reduce the number of children dying from hygiene-related illnesses. With an easy dispenser, children can draw on their hands, making it playful to use and then easily wash it off with water. The pens are easy for children and adults to carry in their bags or pockets and there are three colors to choose from. Available to back on Kickstarter until 26 October, it is hoped that, if successful, it will be a good way to increase health education on hygiene practices in low income communities.

This global challenge is being tackled in countries all over the world. In the US for example, Lifebouy developed a device that attaches to supermarket trolleys and enables customers to sanitise their hands before using the trolley. And in the UK scientists have developed a self-disinfecting device to keep hospital doors germ-free. With the transfer of germs an ongoing challenge internationally, it’s not surprising that finding more ways to wash your hands are continuously being developed. Will we see more dispensers in public places like tubes and buses? Could the SoaPens be the answer to better hygiene in schools?




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