Unilever gives waterloo primary school the thumbs up on hygiene

Durban - Madiba's belief that good school facilities promote learning found meaning when a North Coast school received a clean up to celebrate Mandela Day.

FMCG giant Unilever got 67 local community members including parents and teachers to spruce up Waterloo Primary School at Verulam as a tribute to Mandela's 67 years of public service to South Africa and the world.

The initiative forms part of Unilever’s Sustainable Living Plan, which has set a bold target to improve the health and wellbeing of more than a billion people by 2020 and is fully supported at the highest levels in the business.

“We could think of no better way to honour Madiba’s legacy than investing in our children who are the leaders of tomorrow. Coming to a clean school will ensure a sense of dignity amongst the learners,” said Cynthia Luthuli, Assistant Brand Building Manager for Domestos.

Domestos’s association with Waterloo Primary School dates back to 2012, when the school was identified as one of the recipients of a newly refurbished toilet block. This year, Domestos revisited the school to repair their toilet facilities as part of ongoing maintenance and to ensure the toilets are kept in a hygienic condition.

“The provision of adequate sanitation at schools is crucial to the development and wellbeing of children and is a cause that is close to our hearts,” said Luthuli. For the past four years,Domestos has been involved in toilet refurbishment programmes in South African schools and promoting hygiene education through the ‘Cleaner Toilets, Brighter Future’ campaign.

Domestos provided the school with cleaning material and toilet paper supplies while Lifebuoy, another Unilever Bright Future Campaign brand sponsored handwash liquid soap in a joint effort to promote healthy hygiene habits and to stress the importance of handwashing after visiting the toilet.

In the spirit of giving back to the community, Unilever staff and their families also participated in the clean-up.

Clad in a brightly coloured Domestos T-shirt, Mrs N Thango who was part of Team Clean-up said: “There needs to be greater intervention by businesses to bring relief to the thousands of people that still do not have access to functional sanitation facilities.

“Growing up in a rural area, I can identify with the challenges our people face. A basic right that many people take for granted has today become the source of motivation for the children of this school. Domestos is committed to renewing hope in communities through the provision of proper sanitation.”

Domestos has a global alliance with the World Toilet Organisation (WTO) that aims to improve awareness of the need for providing adequate sanitation. The South African application has been an initiative, in association with a WTO partner, to renovate primary school toilet facilities among schools that have poor infrastructure.

“Four schools and over 11000 children were given access to proper sanitation in 2012, following a contribution by Domestos, Afrisun and South African Toilet Organisation(SATO). We will continue to apply sustainable methods to contribute towards the alleviation of preventable diseases that arise from poor sanitation,” concluded Luthuli.

Approximately 800 000 children die every year from diarrhoea caused by unsafe water, poor sanitation and hygiene. This equates to more than 2 000 children a day that are adversely affected by poor hygiene.

About Unilever South Africa

Unilever South Africa (Pty Ltd) is one of the largest FMCG companies in South Africa. The Company is over 100 years old, with brands like Sunlight, OMO, Lux, Knorr, Vaseline, Shield, Sunsilk, Flora etc that are household names throughout the country. Unilever South Africa has over 3000 employees based across two offices and five manufacturing locations in South Africa. It is rated as one of South Africa’s best employers. For more information visit – www.unilever.co.za

Unilever Sustainable Living Plan

In November 2010 the Unilever Sustainable Living Plan was launched. Unilever publicly committed to a ten year journey towards sustainable growth, with around 60 specific targets embedding this new thinking into our business. What makes the Unilever Sustainable Living Plan different is that it applies right across the value chain. Unilever is taking responsibility not just for its own direct operations but for their suppliers, distributors and – crucially – for how consumers use brands like Dove, Knorr, Lipton, Lifebuoy and Pureit.

The plans sets out that by 2020 Unilever will:

  • help more than one billion people improve their health and well-being;
  • halve the environmental footprint of the making and use of our products;
  • source 100% of our agricultural raw materials sustainably

For more information about Unilever and its brands, please visit www.unilever.com

Unilever South Africa - Unathi Mgobozi External Affairs Manager

+27 31 570 3000
031 570 2470

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