Who we are
The hands4health consortium is a joint initiative of NGOs, academia and private sector entities that develops and implements a comprehensive approach to hand hygiene, water quality and sanitation in primary health care facilities (HCFs) and schools not connected to functional water supply systems.
Together, we carry out a four-year research project (2021-2024) that integrates the TRANSFORM Programme funded by the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC). The project is being implemented in Switzerland (laboratory research) and in Burkina Faso, Mali, Nigeria and Palestine (field development).
The idea of this project is based on a deep personal concern, and a clear awareness of the limitations of the current approaches expressed by the consortium partners – WASH and behaviour psychology experts, scientists, implementers, manufacturers and consultants.
It is further triggered by the organisational knowledge of the scale and extent of the poor hand hygiene in primary HCFs and schools, amplified by the urgency of the COVID-19 pandemic and the willingness to respond efficiently and support resilience development in the long term.
Through informal exchanges at Aguasan, Swiss Water Partnership and other WASH-related meetings, it became clear to us that fragmented initiatives and projects generate evidence and experience but may also contain missed opportunities.
Therefore, we decided to join our long-lasting experiences in developing and implementing applied research projects together, and conducting field research and capacity development with local partner organisations, to form the hands4health consortium.
Ten partners form the hands4health consortium, each with a different expertise and role in the project. The University of Applied Sciences and Arts Northwestern Switzerland (FHNW) leads the overall project management and coordination, whereas the Steering Group takes strategic decisions. The latter comprises one member of each of the partner organisations. More information regarding the specific roles of each project partner is available under the menu button ‘About Us’.
The Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation (SDC) funds the hands4health initiative, through a project and programme contribution of CHF 4’700’000. More information is available here.