A Safe Pair of Hands
WINNER: Hindustan Unilever WHY IT WON: For creating awareness and infrastructure in health and sanitation
INA COUNTRY WHERE OVER 900,000 CHILDREN under the age of five years die from various diseases, handwash with soap has been cited as one of the most cost-effective ways to reduce infant mortality. Hindu stan Unilever Limited (HUL) saw this as an opportunity and stepped in. It launched the ‘handwashing behaviour change programme’ in 2010, and has reached out to 68 million people in Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, Odisha, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra.
HUL’s Domex Toilet Academy has trained 600 micro-entrepreneurs and masons to create a demand for toilets in low-income households, impacting over a million people. ‘Swachhata Doot’ volunteering, launched in 2015 under its ‘Swachh Aadat, Swachh Bharat’ initiative, had over 3,000 employees participating last year.
The ‘Start a Little Good’ campaign promotes water conservation and plastic waste management. HUL’s ‘Suvidha’ centre, set up in November 2016, provides affordable sanitation, shower and laundry services to the Azad Nagar slum in Mumbai’s Ghatkopar. Four more centres have come up since then. HUL has pledged that 25 per cent of all plastic used by the company will come from recycled sources by 2025. ■
CLEAN SWEEP HUL chairman and MD Sanjiv Mehta with beneficiaries at the Suvidha centre in Andheri, Mumbai