Why is hand washing important?

Washing hands with daughterEvery day we touch our food and mouths with our hands so it’s important to keep them clean to stop the spread of germs and illness.

You should always wash your hands before you...

  • Prepare food and eat
  • Treat a cut

And after you

  • Touch uncooked foods
  • Change your kids’ nappies
  • Blow your nose, cough or sneeze
  • Play with your pets 
  • Have been in the garden
  • Take out the rubbish 

Hands Up For Hygiene


Hands Up For Hygiene logo

Our schools programme, helping school kids learn how, when and why they need to wash their hands.

Did you know?

  • "Handwashing is one of the most important ways of preventing the spread of illness"

  • "Regular hand washing can reduce absenteeism amongst school children"

  • "Our hands carry a mixture of both good and bad bacteria"

  • "Most of the bacteria our hands pick up live on fingertips and under our nails"

  • "Washing with water alone doesn't guarantee that bad bacteria are removed"

  • "Good bacteria act as our personal shield against unwanted bacteria"

  • "Many bacteria can survive on surfaces for several months"

  • "The skin has its own natural defences against bad bacteria"


Find out more about good hand hygiene