Tork, an Essity brand, launched the Ella’s Handwashing Adventure app, optimized for smartphones and tablets, in North America. The recent global pandemic has proven that handwashing is essential, and during this year’s cold and flu season, hand hygiene has never been more critical. The app offers a range of playful materials to support preschool and kindergarten teachers and staff in addressing child hand washing with those ages three to six. All materials feature “Ella”—a cartoon character and recurring guide developed with input from young children that kids can play together with and learn from.
Now more than ever, it is critical to teach young children the importance of hand hygiene. Yet 47.6% of parents don’t know what procedures their child’s preschool has in place for hand hygiene, and more than 85% of parents need to remind or nag their kids to wash their hands.1 The simple act of handwashing effectively helps prevent infections, particularly among children in busy preschool and kindergarten environments as they constantly use their hands to explore food, toys, and more.
“It is imperative to introduce hand hygiene education early in order to form healthy, life-long habits,” said Rachel Olsavicky, Regional Marketing Manager, Commercial & Public Interest, Essity Professional Hygiene. “Tork has worked with schools for many years, and Ella’s Handwashing Adventure is a part of our commitment to bring hygiene top of mind. By introducing inspiring and playful tools for children, we aim to minimize infections, reduce sick leave, and reduce the burden on parents and teachers.”
The Ella’s Handwashing Adventure app and a variety of playful and engaging materials have now been compiled into a toolkit for preschools and kindergartens—available online for free as part of the Tork Clean Care program. The materials available include:
- Brochures and information for school staff: Presentations, brochures, and leaflets with an introduction to the Ella toolkit, information about hand hygiene, as well as games, tips, and tricks to teach handwashing to preschoolers and kindergartners;
- Ella’s Handwashing Adventure App: An app for teaching child hand washing in a fun and intuitive way, using a gamification-approach and no written text. The app has been fact checked by SMI (the department of communicable disease control in Västra Götaland, Sweden);
- Ella poster:A colorful poster of different situations where it’s more important or less important to wash hands;
- Other interactive materials to engage children, such as an Ella coloring poster and an Ella Diploma;
- Max’s Handwashing School: For older children aged 6-10, Max’s Handwashing School materials can be found here.
Ella’s Handwashing Adventure can be downloaded via the App Store or Google Play, and the toolkit of support materials for school staff can be downloaded for free from the Tork Clean Care Education website.
About the Survey
1The survey has been executed by Questback on commission by Essity, during August and September 2013. The sample consists of 3,121 randomly selected parents with children in pre-school, distributed equally over the geographical regions; United Kingdom, Sweden, Finland, the Netherlands, Germany, and France. Data has been collected through online panels with invites distributed through e-mail.