HYGIENE POVERTY: Alexandra Burke highlights a campaign to help affected children
Alexandra Burke highlights a hygiene poverty campaign
The majority (69%) of teachers across the UK have observed poor hygiene because of hygiene poverty and believe it has become a greater problem since the COVID-19 pandemic. Nearly three quarters (71%) have taught pupils with body odour and 75% have seen children attend school in unwashed clothes. Nearly half (41%) have seen students go without period products and over half (62%) with unbrushed teeth.
The effects of hygiene poverty are thought to be damaging to children’s mental health with over three quarters (79%) of teachers saying they believe it influences students’ self-esteem, and 70% say it can lead to bullying. Many teachers have stepped in to offer hands on support, with almost half (42%) saying they have purchased hygiene products for students and 34% laundering student’s PE kits at home.
To help tackle this growing issue, Boots has increased the number of its stores that host The Hygiene Bank donation points to over 400 across the UK making it easier for customers to get involved. In addition, the retailer has donated over 620,000 products to its charity partner, which has distributed them to over 155 local communities. Boots also matches customer donations in stores to The Hygiene Bank through its You Donate, We Donate scheme.
Alexandra Burke, performer and ambassador for Boots and The Hygiene Bank partnership, said:
“The results of this survey highlight the extent of this issue and show just howimportant the partnership between The Hygiene Bank and Boots is. Growing up, I went to school with lots of children who didn’t have access to hygiene essentials so I saw first-hand the effect that it can have. This is why I’m proud to be a part of this partnership and urge everyone to do their part and help tackle the issue of hygiene poverty.”
Lucy Reynolds, Vice President of Communications, CSR and Sustainability at Boots UK, added:
“At Boots we want as many children as possible to have access to the hygiene products they need as they return to the classroom. It is just one manifestation of hygiene poverty in the UK, which we are committed to tackling by teaming up with The Hygiene Bank to support the incredible work they do in communities.”
Lizzy Hall, Founder of The Hygiene Bank, continued: “Hygiene poverty means people making decisions most of us cannot imagine – like choosing between eating or staying clean because you cannot afford both. At The Hygiene Bank, we provide essential hygiene and personal care products to those who need them most. Our partnership with Boots means we can get one step closer to tackling this crisis, one donation at a time.”
To help them tackle hygiene poverty, Boots and The Hygiene Bank are calling for the public to donate some of the most basic products to Boots donation points across the country. The Hygiene Bank is also in desperate need of volunteers that can help distribute these donated products within their local communities.
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