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Daily group handwashing with soap and toothbrushing with fluoride will soon be a
common sight as day care centers in Northern Samar are set to begin implementing
WASH in ECCD.
The program is the joint effort of the Department of Education, Department of Social
Welfare and Development, Early Childhood Care & Development Council, Australian
AID, UNICEF, and Fit for School to integrate water, sanitation, and hygiene in the day
care service.
Through daily handwashing and toothbrushing activities, WASH in ECCD creates a
routine to help kindergarten and day care pupils build lasting hygiene habits. In
addition, the program mobilizes community partners to transform day care centers into
healthy places, ensuring that children have access to water, wash facilities, and toilets.
The launch of WASH in ECCD in the province will be held on October 9 and October 23
in Bobon and Mapanas, Northern Samar respectively.
The program launch will include a memorandum of agreement signing among partners,
ceremonial turnover of hygiene packages as well as the celebration of Global
Handwashing Day 2013.
Joining the ceremony are representatives from the local government, Department of
Education, Department of Social Welfare and Development, agency partners, day care
workers, parents, and children.*
Daily group handwashing with soap and toothbrushing with fluoride will soon be a common sight as day care centers in Northern Samar are set to begin implementing WASH in ECCD.

The program is the joint effort of the Department of Education, Department of Social Welfare and Development, Early Childhood Care & Development Council, Australian AID, UNICEF, and Fit for School to integrate water, sanitation, and hygiene in the day care service.

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A few days after the start of the new school year, Public Schools Division Superintendent Mary S. Gustilo, Iloilo DepEd Division Nurse-in-Charge Mary Liberty Mabunay, Teacher-in-Charge Hobert Catedrilla, and mothers from the local Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) gathered in the shade of the nipa hut that functions as Leganes Elementary School's herbal station.
In between the friendly chatter, they brought out buckets, wooden spoons, plastic cups, bottles of edible oil, bags of flour, and calamansi – some of the ingredients and tools needed to create soap for the school's daily handwashing activity.
Tapping on already existing skill sets and knowledge, Mabunay shares that integrating DepEd’s EHCP with the soap-making activity was one way to help augment the school's funds for program expenses and create their own supply of soap.
“The highlight of the undertaking is [to get] ready for EHCP [implementation]," says Mabunay.
Mabunay adds that the local partners chose to do what they could and with what they had to help support the school's EHCP implementation. Some of the ingredients were provided by the school while the rest were purchased by PTA members in the local market.
With the success of the first batch of handmade soaps, Mabunay hopes to make this a regular community activity in Leganes ES as well as Guihaman-Buntatala Elementary School, another school selected for the pioneer EHCP implementation in Leganes district.
"Soap-making activity could make a big difference in many ways. [The school] could use the soap for EHCP primarily. [It can be a] source of income for parents who will choose to sell their products,” says Mabunay. She adds that the activity could enhance the PTA's productivity and social mobilization.
Fit for School Regional Project Officer Zander Frofunga, who was present during the activity and had the chance to try the soap, shares his delight in the school's product.
"[The soaps] are effective for handwashing. The only difference [with the EHCP kit soap] is the scent and moisture, but the result is the same – clean hands. The bottom line is it's the action of rubbing that removes the bacteria from the skin and not exactly the type of soap."
“Leganes ES is a pioneer in terms of partnering soap-making activity with DepEd’s EHCP. It’s a good innovation and one that will be a great help not just for Leganes but also for other schools that will choose to conduct this activity as well,” adds Frofunga.
A few days after the start of the new school year, Public Schools Division Superintendent Mary S. Gustilo, Iloilo DepEd Division Nurse-in-Charge Mary Liberty Mabunay, Teacher-in-Charge Hobert Catedrilla, and mothers from the local Parent-Teacher Association (PTA) gathered in the shade of the nipa hut that functions as Leganes Elementary School's herbal station.

In between the friendly chatter, they brought out buckets, wooden spoons, plastic cups, bottles of edible oil, bags of flour, and calamansi – some of the ingredients and tools needed to create soap for the school's daily handwashing activity.

Tapping on already existing skill sets and knowledge, Mabunay shares that integrating DepEd’s EHCP with the soap-making activity was one way to help augment the school's funds for program expenses and create their own supply of soap.

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While simple interventions like handwashing with soap, toothbrushing with fluoride, and twice yearly deworming have been helpful in keeping Maralang Elementary School pupils healthy, school head Maria Fe Romero wants to take DepEd’s EHCP interventions to the next level.
The school has recently supplemented DepEd's flagship program by providing healthier alternatives in the canteen. Fresh fruits and vegetable dishes have replaced junk food and sweets to help provide proper nourishment as well as augment DepEd's EHCP in preventing child-related diseases such as dental caries.
“Aside from EHCP, we also want our school children to be vegetable and fruit eaters so when they grow up they will continue to adopt this behaviour,” said Romero. The school head added that since the children began their daily EHCP activities, they have become more active and attentive during class sessions.
Maralang Elementary School's best practices were shared during a recent EHCP monitoring and orientation activity attended by teachers and PTCA members. The activity was spearheaded by DepEd division of Zamboanga del Sur’s Health and Nutrition staff and supported by Fit for School.**
While simple interventions like handwashing with soap, toothbrushing with fluoride, and twice yearly deworming have been helpful in keeping Maralang Elementary School pupils healthy, school head Maria Fe Romero wants to take DepEd’s EHCP interventions to the next level.

The school has recently supplemented DepEd's flagship program by providing healthier alternatives in the canteen. Fresh fruits and vegetable dishes have replaced junk food and sweets to help provide proper nourishment as well as augment DepEd's EHCP in preventing child-related diseases such as dental caries.

“Aside from EHCP, we also want our school children to be vegetable and fruit eaters so when they grow up they will continue to adopt this behaviour,” said Romero. The school head added that since the children began their daily EHCP activities, they have become more active and attentive during class sessions.

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