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At a glance: Australia

The Wiggles donate a song to UNICEF for first Global Handwashing Day

UNICEF Image: the Wiggles, Wiggles, UNICEF
© The Wiggles/2008
Australian children’s entertainers, The Wiggles, have donated a song to UNICEF for the first-ever Global Handwashing Day. The Wiggles are Anthony (Blue), Jeff (Purple), Sam (Yellow) and Murray (Red).

By Saira Saeed Khan

NEW YORK, USA, 9 October 2008 – The popular Australian children’s musical entertainers, The Wiggles, have produced and donated a song to UNICEF to mark the first-ever Global Handwashing Day, to be observed on 15 October.

This simple and catchy tune seeks to motivate millions of children around the world, to transform the simple act of handwashing with soap from an abstract and seldom practiced behaviour into an automatic and enjoyable habit.

Every day, approximately 5,000 children die as a result of waterborne diseases. Washing hands with soap before eating and after using the toilet can help reduce the incidence of diarrhoeal diseases by almost 50 per cent.

UNICEF Australia Goodwill Ambassadors
The Wiggles appointment as UNICEF Australia Goodwill Ambassadors reflects their commitment to the world’s children.

Since being named as Ambassadors in February, the group has embarked on a number of fundraising initiatives – including concerts to help raise awareness and support for vital UNICEF water and sanitation projects.

“UNICEF gives all children, regardless of race or religion, the best start in life. For that reason, we feel deeply honoured to be asked to take on the role of Goodwill Ambassadors and work with UNICEF to help improve the lives of children around the world,” said Murray Cook, the ‘Red Wiggle’.

Success and partnership
The Wiggles, often called ‘the world's biggest pre-school band’, have achieved worldwide success with their children's albums, videos, television series and concert appearances. By 2008, The Wiggles had earned 17 gold, 12 platinum, 3 double-platinum and 10 multi-platinum awards.

Global Handwashing Day is an initiative of the Public-Private Partnership for Handwashing, which is spearheaded by UNICEF, USAID, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the World Bank Water and Sanitation Programme, Unilever and Procter & Gamble.




View a PSA featuring Australian children’s entertainers, The Wiggles, performing the song they produced and donated for Global Handwashing Day.
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