The Global Soap Project is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization with a mission to improve global health through hygiene. We do this partly by distributing freshly recycled soap to vulnerable populations through global health programs to reach people who lack access to it around the world. We focus on long-term hygiene promotion to ensure that once people have access to soap, they will use it and acquire it locally and long-term. We also operate micro-loan programs for small-scale soapmakers in communities without access to quality, affordable soap around the world. Our mission is to improve global health in a measurable, sustainable, locally-sensitive way — and everything we do works to make sure we create a positive impact on global health that supports local systems and economies and can be sustained without long-term dependence on aid or donations.
Why not?! The leading causes of death in children globally (responsible for 1.8 million deaths annually) are diseases that could be prevented with soap. Studies have proven that soap is the single most effective way to prevent these deaths — more effective than vaccines, medications, or clean water initiatives alone. In fact, simply handwashing with soap can cut morbidity rates from the leading causes of death by nearly 50%.
The Global Soap Project is run by a team of dedicated professional staff and governed by a national board of directors. Sam Stephens took the helm as Executive Director in February 2012 and is in charge of leading the organization. To learn more about the entire leadership team, click here.
Vulnerable populations without access to soap, including orphans, refugees, disaster victims, and families living in extreme poverty, are the targets of our efforts. We work in-country with a network of leading global health organizations to distribute our soap as part of humanitarian relief efforts and long-term hygiene education programs. Our goal is to ensure that, once people receive our soap, they never lack access to it again — meaning we have to help them understand how to use it, why to use it, and why to acquire it locally for the rest of their lives. In doing so, we create an impact that is sustained for the rest of their lives while supporting local economies, and without creating dependence on us or free soap.
We work with leading global health organizations that have strong programs in the countries to which we send soap. These partners help us identify the populations that need soap and hygiene education, and then help distribute the soap to ensure 100% gets to those who need it most. Most importantly, they help conduct hygiene education to ensure the recipients understand how and why to use the soap on a regular basis, and conduct ongoing efforts to ensure the positive impact is sustained long-term.
Partners include the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Partners in Health, CARE, and many more.
Our partner Clean the World needs your help recycling soap and putting hygiene kits together. If you will be in Las Vegas or Orlando, please join us! https://cleantheworld.org/get-involved/become-a-volunteer/