Hygiene Program

A typical young inhabitant of one of the improverished San Mateo hill communities

Children enjoy the benefits of a good bath while their mothers receive training in proper hygiene procedures.

Fun instruction in dental care is taught through skits and illustrations.

La Familia Futuro, Mexico City, D.F.

To launch our Hygiene Program (HP) we chose the San Mateo hill communities outside Mexico City, where we have provided food-aid to disadvantaged families for the past few years .

The program instructs mothers in proper hygiene procedures in regards to bathing and caring for their children, as well as providing instruction in proper brushing of teeth. As part of the program each child receives new clothes, shoes, a hygiene kit (including toothbrush, toothpaste, soap & shampoo), and a washbasin.

Prior to launching the program, our research involved interviewing families who would be potential clients for the program. We specifically targeted families having between 3-5 children, those who could ill-afford even basic health-care needs. Typically, such families do not even have access to safe running water, therefore stomach disorders, diarrhea, skin warts and like diseases are typical, as are various body parasites. Bearing in mind their minimal economic abilities, we modeled solutions around low-cost options which became the core elements of the program.

We have learned that our simple program objectives appeal to these families as much as if we were offering them a complete set of new furniture for their dwellings. -As they see it, a hygiene program provides a building block to bring about lifestyle changes that will make a difference.

When questioned about their living conditions, personal appearance and self-esteem, the general response from such families is that they genuinely desire to elevate their level of living and quality of life. Parents typically comment on the shortage of water, the danger of sewer water in play areas, lack of money to buy food and cleaning supplies, etc. They especially want their children to learn cleanliness and raise their personal standard, as they feel this will enhance their future educational and work opportunities.

To learn more: La Familia Futuro