Housekeeping

Soap Aid – saving lives by re-using waste soap

“Well over half of the 9000 children that are estimated to die from disease every day in our poorest countries could be saved by the routine use of hand washing with soap,” says professor Martyn Jeggo, director of health programs from Soap Aid.

Every day, thousands of hotels across the globe, discard millions of pieces of soap. In an Australian first, Soap Aid, a not-for-profit organisation, is collecting the pieces of waste soap from hotels and converting it into a potentially lifesaving program. Soap Aid literally takes soap used once or twice by guests from hotels and ensures it is recycled into a hygiene improvement program focused on washing hands.

Soap Aid was born out of a passion to reduce the impact of waste soap and most importantly, prevent children from dying from hygiene related illnesses. The organisation was founded by Mike Matulick and his team at Concept Amenities and now driven by a talented, volunteer board of directors, all with professional backgrounds, rolling their sleeves up to launch and grow this much needed program.

“Soap Aid is a unique opportunity for Concept Amenities to remain true to its core values of promoting eco-consciousness and improving the quality of life on our planet,” says Mr Matulick. “With the help of others in our industry, we can save millions of lives together.”
Waste soap often ends up in already overflowing landfills and contaminates fragile groundwater systems. Through a pilot program with Rotary International, Soap Aid is currently collecting waste soap from 2800 rooms in Australia. Together with a kick start donation to acquire reprocessing machinery, Soap Aid has produced their first shipment of new soap and it is ready to go. The soap, along with educational materials is destined to land in three specific states in India in coming months. Locally, they have donated soap to Pilbara in Western Australia with the help of World Vision.

Soap Aid is seeking their first national partner hotel group to continue to expand their mission. For as little as 0.49c or less per overnight stay, Soap Aid can organise collection of discarded soap, reprocess and deliver it into deserving hands locally and globally. Their aim is to increase the collection and processing to as many hotels that are willing to participate. The involvement for a hotel is minimal and obviously has a profound impact on human life. Hotels interested in participating and for more information contact: [email protected]

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