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New app launches to help children learn importance of hand hygiene

A new app that aims to help young people learn the importance of hand washing has been launched.

The De Montfort University Leicester (DMU) researchers behind A Germ’s Journey has teamed up with leading hand hygiene training company SureWash to launch the mobile app, which is available to download in the Apple store now.

SureWash has been delivering hand hygiene training to healthcare facilities for more than 10 years and have recently begun to shift their focus from solely healthcare, into education and other industries.

THUMB surewash

The company is now collaborating with A Germ’s Journey, an educational company developed by education specialist, Professor Sarah Younie and microbiologist Professor Katie Laird from DMU. They focus on teaching young children the importance of hand washing and how it can prevent the spread of disease through a series of interactive books and e-books.

The app ‘SureWash: A Kid’s Journey’ incorporates the core SureWash technology that is used in global healthcare settings, to teach children how to wash their hands correctly. To enhance this, educational resources from A Germ’s Journey are also included. These will enable young children to learn how good hand-hygiene can help prevent illnesses, supporting their own health and well-being.

SureWash: A Kid’s Journey is available to download worldwide from the Apple store now. It will also launch on Android early in 2022. This will therefore provide schools/educators and parents/carers with a tool to deliver fun and interactive hand washing education.

Professor Katie Laird and Professor Sarah Younie said they were delighted to be collaborating with SureWash on the new app. They added: “The Germ’s Journey team are delighted to be working with SureWash, where we can bring our educational resources into the digital sphere by using technology to ensure hand washing techniques are enhanced in children.

“Germ’s Journey resources have already been shown to improve handwashing behaviour in children and the use of an app will enhance this further.”

Cecil Ryan, Executive Chairman from SureWash added: “We are excited to partner with A Germ’s Journey to develop this innovative, educational mobile application. We have adapted our technology used to train healthcare workers to now educate children about the importance of hand hygiene.

“The addition of A Germ’s Journey educational resources and their understanding and expertise in the field has made it possible to bring this unique product to life. SureWash: A Kid’s Journey enables teachers to educate children about the importance of hand hygiene in a fun, interactive and collaborative way. We are proud that this app will help children build a life-long skill, creating healthier outcomes for children around the world.”
Since launching the Germ’s Journey project five years ago, Dr Laird and Professor Younie have also translated the book into Gujarati, and distributed it throughout the Gujarati region of Ahmedabad, India, and last year they developed a special edition of the original book for young children in West Africa.

In 2019, the series was brought to life at Thinktank Birmingham Science Museum for its MiniBrum gallery; a child-sized world designed for youngsters to explore their understanding of STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) through different role-play zones. 

Posted on Friday 14th January 2022

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