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Volunteer Team Serves Hundreds in Guadalajara, Mexico

In late September, Clean the World set out on a Global Volunteer Experience trip to Mexico in conjunction with Children International. We spent two days in the city of Guadalajara, teaching proper hygiene education to accompany the 15,000 bars we distributed.

IMG_4024Clean the World and Children International have a partnership to provide children across the globe with consistent, long-term access to soap. “Access is only part of our hygiene solution,” said Lily Dimling, director of programs for Clean the World’s Global Soap & Hygiene Initiative. “Understanding when and how to use the soap turns it into a powerful tool to fight disease and illness, which is why we emphasize hygiene education on our Global Volunteer Experience trips.”

Longtime supporters and patrons Alisa J. Faulk, Kris Vos, and Ann Nelson accompanied the Dimling along with Clean the World’s Veronica Shivers and Paul “Doc” Skomsky. These women work in the hospitality industry, coming from the Hyatt, Marriott and Renaissance companies. They experienced the full lifecycle of the Clean the World program, from the everyday collection at their hotels, to touring and volunteering at our recycling facility, to delivering the recycled soap to children in need.

The whirlwind trip was Clean the World’s first visit to Guadalajara. Our group visited a primary school, a high school, and two Children International community centers, including the Tlaquepaque Community Center. Guadalajara is the second most densely populated area in Mexico. The urban city has areas of dire need where Children International steps in to help.

The Clean the World group received a warm welcome at each location, interacting with 100 to 300 children during every visit. We shared the importance of hand washing in a fun and interactive way. Our Global Volunteer Experience volunteers dressed up as Super Aqua (water) and Super Jabón (soap). They came dashing into the room full of children, showing their strength and power, using teamwork and friendship to fight the “germs,” portrayed by the rest of the Clean the World crew.

IMG_3810We recruited children to stand with us in front of the group to sing “Happy Hand Washing” to the tune of “La Bamba.” Doc managed to find a guitar at every location and strummed the chords of the song, which engaged the children. The song is to remind them how long they should wash their hands. When they are done humming or singing the song, they will have washed their hands twenty seconds. “It was a very special feeling giving the mothers soap,” Doc said. “These mothers manage on such limited resources, and it is important to all of us to keep our families healthy and clean.”

We also brought basins of water to demonstrate proper hand-washing techniques. Children washed their hands while team members provided guidance and let them practice doing it correctly. The children loved getting involved and showing off their new skills in front of the group. Their biggest surprise was looking at how dirty the water was when they finished. They all were very excited about our visit and promised they would take what they learned back home and teach their families about proper hand washing.

It is important for us to instill the fact that hand washing is the simplest way to prevent the spread of disease, infection, and illness so the children can lead healthier lives. However, we gained so much as well. “The children hug you; the moms hug you. It was a truly uplifting experience,” Doc said.

Each Global Volunteer Experience is an opportunity for Clean the World to spread the love. We show children and families that no matter where you are from or how you live, each person’s health and well-being is important. Please join us on an upcoming trip to see how Clean the World’s recycled soap changes lives around the world.

After all, the global hygiene revolution starts with you!

Clean the World Launches in Europe

Six years after creating the world’s first and only large-scale hotel soap recycling program, we are excited to announce that beginning today – Global Handwashing Day 2015 – Clean the World is now operating in Europe.

ctw-europe-vertical-logo-finalFor the expansion into Europe, our plan was to follow the same formula that worked for us in North America and Asia. The launch needed to happen in cities with both a high density of hotel rooms and a focus on green operational practices. London and Paris were the natural choices. Our first two European hotel partners are the London Heathrow Marriott Hotel and Hilton Paris Opera. Discarded soap and bottled amenities from those hotels and others will be recycled to benefit European citizens who are at risk for hygiene-related illnesses.

European hotels have a strong sustainability focus and are looking for new ways to embrace corporate social responsibility. We have been receiving a steady stream of inquiries from hotels in the region over the past couple years. There is a high demand for recycling services, and we expect rapid adoption over the next 12 months.

The timing of this announcement is especially meaningful because today is Global Handwashing Day. It is an advocacy day dedicated to increasing awareness about the importance of hand washing with soap. Beyond recycling discarded soap and bottled amenities from hotels, Clean the World’s mission includes educating people around the globe about the value of hand washing as an effective and affordable way to prevent diseases. Global Handwashing Day is an opportunity to design, test, and replicate creative ways to encourage people to wash their hands with soap at critical times.

We continue to be amazed and humbled by how far Clean the World has come since starting to scrape discarded soap in a one-car garage back in 2009. Six years later, we have 4,000 hotel partners across three continents! Since 2009, Clean the World has distributed more than 30 million recycled soap bars and one million hygiene kits in the United States, Canada, and Asia, while diverting 4,000 metric tons of waste from landfills.

Now we have the opportunity to reduce the influx of waste to European landfills as well.

A Letter From Our Chief Development Officer

Dear Friend:

On Global Handwashing Day, we recognize the importance of hand washing in global health and celebrate the impact hygiene organizations are making around the world.

honduras_hand_washingAs you probably know, hand washing makes a difference! Hygiene-related illnesses are the leading causes of death for children globally, claiming nearly 6,000 lives every day – more than AIDS, Malaria, and TB combined. The good news is that we can change that. Hand washing with soap is the single most effective and affordable way to prevent those deaths, reducing the death rate by as much as 50 percent. In fact, since 2009, the number of children dying daily has dropped from roughly 9,000 to fewer than 6,000. We’re happy to have been part of that success.

We’ve distributed more than 30 million bars of soap since 2009, reaching some of the most vulnerable populations around the world. From Ebola response efforts in West Africa to earthquake victims in Nepal, and from disaster relief in the United States to families living in extreme poverty in Latin America – and countless situations in between – we’ve been working with our network of partners to get soap and hygiene education to people who need it most.

Clean the World donation button

Just last month, we shipped soap to support the heartbreaking Syrian refugee crisis in the Middle East and Europe. Soap is a critical tool in times of crisis, and our shipment will help prevent the spread of disease in the refugee camps during this chaotic time.

Perhaps most important, our work focuses not only on the short-term need, but also the long-term ability to sustain the impact we create. That’s why we focus on long-term hygiene education programs and support local micro-lending and micro-enterprise initiatives, to ensure that we’re changing behaviors and supporting the local economy to help continue the impact we’re making over time.

Today, as we celebrate Global Handwashing Day, I hope you will join me in making a donation to help us in this lifesaving work. We couldn’t do what we do without the generosity and support of donors like you. Your gift today will help us continue to get lifesaving soap to families in need here at home and around the world. To donate, simply click the button below.

As always, thanks so much for your support! And have a wonderful Global Handwashing Day.

With gratitude,

Sam Stephens
Chief Development Officer

Sam Stephens Signature

Support Clean the World on Global Handwashing Day

Happy Global Handwashing Day!

Every year, Oct. 15 is set aside as a day to motivate and mobilize people around the world to improve their hand-washing habits. Clean the World is proud to be part of this movement because it aligns with our goal of eliminating hygiene-related deaths through providing bars of recycled of soap and hygiene education to at-risk people. By recycling and distributing discarded hotel soap and bottled amenities, we have contributed to a 30 percent reduction in pre-adolescent deaths from hygiene-related illnesses since 2009.

But we still have a long way to go. That’s why we are asking you to recognize Global Handwashing Day by supporting Clean the World with a donation to help advance our lifesaving work. Your gift will improve the hygiene circumstances for families both here at home and around the world. In fact, 92 percent of the money donated to Clean the World goes directly toward funding the mission.

A recent study showed that 65 percent of hygiene-related deaths are preventable by hand washing with bar soap. At Clean the World, a $25 donation funds the production of 125 new recycled soap bars. This soap, along with proper hygiene education about the value of routine handwashing, will help improve the overall health and well-being of the people who need it most.

Clean the World donate button

Giving Social

We always accept donations through the “Donate” button located in the header of every page on this website. Or in this case, you can just click the button right above this paragraph. However, we just launched a swift and easy online donation system last week. The new social media tool “#Donate” makes donating quick and nearly effortless. Facebook and Twitter users can donate to Clean the World by posting “#Donate,” followed by a dollar amount.

On Facebook, this donation is submitted through a post on the organization’s page or as a comment on a recent post. On Twitter, you Tweet “#Donate + dollar amount” to @CleanTheWorld, and that tweet translates into support for our mission. The “#Donate” tool is becoming very popular among donors who frequent social media platforms such Facebook and Twitter and prefer the convenience of giving back to their charity of choice without navigating away from their newsfeed.

Vacation Day

If your upcoming travel plans steer you in the direction of Orlando or Las Vegas, Clean the World’s Recycling Operations Centers are always in need of volunteers and extra hands to help sort soap. It’s a great way to spend a morning with your family, friends or co-workers and experience the power of our life-saving mission hands-on. Clean the World staff will walk you through the background and history of the organization and share the recycling process that transforms the discarded hotel soap into new recycled bars.

Whether it’s donating, volunteering, or simply sharing Clean the World’s mission with friends, neighbors, and relatives, your support is truly appreciated in every form.

#Donate now @Clean the World

Screen Shot 2015-10-09 at 1.17.39 PMWe are excited to announce our newest social media add-on feature: #Donate.

If you’re hip to social media, you know that’s pronounced “Hashtag Donate.”

This amazing technology from GoodWorld allows users to donate money to their favorite cause simply by commenting “#donate” followed by a dollar amount on a charity’s Facebook page or @ them on Twitter.

Making a quick donation online has never been easier. #Donate redirects first-time users to a new browser tab, where they securely enter their credit card information and confirm the donation amount. Returning #donate users are simply requested to confirm their donation amount. Within 12 hours, the payment is processed, and the non-profit receives their donation after a small service fee deduction.

This technology is a huge benefit to Clean the World, as donations of any size help greatly in the global distribution of our recycled soap bars.

Donations help us further our mission of eliminating environmental waste from the hospitality industry and preventing hygiene-related deaths by supplying soap to at-risk people. Clean the World uses donations to recycle and distribute soap and to provide hygiene education that teaches people how, when, and why to wash their hands.

We launched this new feature on Facebook and Twitter just in time for Global Handwashing Day, which is right around the corner, on Thursday, Oct. 15. Clean the World is a huge supporter of Global Handwashing Day and other hygiene initiatives.

Handwashing education is a crucial piece in tackling preventable hygiene-related diseases in developing regions. By implementing proper handwashing techniques in every household, school, and workplace, we could save more than a half-million lives each year. Therefore, we love spreading awareness through Global Handwashing Day and continuously strive to find ways to make soap readily available to all.

Check out our new tool, tell your friends, and let us know what you think! You can prepare for you first donation by visiting GoodWorld right now and authorizing your Facebook and Twitter accounts.

Las Vegas Sands and Guest Supply Team With Clean the World to Build 200,000 Hygiene Kits

On Saturday, Sept. 26, Las Vegas Sands Corp. (LVS) and Guest Supply, a wholly owned subsidiary of Sysco Corporation, joined us for an unprecedented global volunteer event. In a 24-hour period, more than 4,000 LVS team members and community volunteers built 200,000 hygiene kits that will be distributed to people in need worldwide.

lvs_volunteersThe Las Vegas Sands Global Hygiene Build with Clean the World took place sequentially at five locations around the globe:

  • Marina Bay Sands in Singapore
  • Venetian Macao in Macao, China
  • Sands Bethlehem in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania
  • The Venetian Las Vegas in Las Vegas, Nevada
  • The Clean the World Las Vegas Recycling Operations Center

Kit building kicked off at 9 a.m. local time in Singapore and ended at 6 p.m. local time in Las Vegas.

LVS organized the Global Hygiene Build as part of its corporate social responsibility program, Sands Cares. As a longtime supporter of Clean the World’s mission, LVS has contributed enough discarded soap to create a half-million new bars of recycled soap to combat hygiene-related illnesses among at-risk people in developing regions. This event was yet another way for the company to serve people who don’t have access to hygiene supplies.

“This event exceeded our expectations, with record team member and community volunteer support for an amazing 24-hour united effort to help people in need around the world,” said Ron Reese, senior vice president of corporate communications at LVS. “Clean the World does an outstanding job of taking a meaningful, yet often overlooked cause and getting people rallied to make an impact on the health and well-being of underprivileged populations with critical hygiene supplies.”

Guest Supply was a supporting sponsor of the event and provided hygiene supplies for the kits. Since Clean the World was founded in 2009, Guest Supply has provided the much-needed recovery and distribution logistics for discarded soap and shampoo products from many worldwide lodging partners, while also donating soap that would have otherwise been unused surplus from their manufacturing facilities.

 Clean the World affords us the perfect opportunity to utilize our expertise and relationships to make a difference for people around the world,” said Paul Xenis, president and chief operating officer of Guest Supply. “We are proud to support the Global Hygiene Build as part of our company’s commitment to the global hygiene revolution.”

Clean the World founder and CEO Shawn Seipler said LVS and Guest Supply play significant roles in his organization’s effort to increase access to soap and hygiene education.

“We can’t overstate the value of these partnerships,” said Clean the World founder and CEO Shawn Seipler. “Through their day-to-day support of our life-saving mission and involvement in events such as the Global Hygiene Build, Las Vegas Sands and Guest Supply set the standard for corporate social responsibility. We are incredibly fortunate to work hand-in-hand with companies that align with Clean the World on so many levels to help us achieve our goals.”

Since we founded Clean the World in 2009, hygiene-related deaths among children under the age of 5 have decreased 30 percent, from an average of 9,000 a day to 6,000, a day.

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