Mina Guli is a global leader, entrepreneur and adventurer committed to making a difference in the world. Following a 15-year career in climate action, Mina established Thirst – a non-profit changing the way we think about water. Harnessing her passion for running to provide bars of soap to those who need it the most, in 2020 she launched the #Sweat4Soap campaign. REVOLVE connected with Mina to talk about her latest project, her aspirations and plans for the future.
What was the driving motivation for the #Sweat4Soap campaign?
Right now we’re washing our hands, our clothes and the surfaces around our home more than ever. For most of us, the process is relatively straightforward, we do it without a second thought. Tap on, hands underneath, apply soap and sing happy birthday while we scrub. But for the 3 billion people on our planet that don’t have access to adequate handwashing facilities, it’s a very different story. For these people – women and girls, men and boys, parents, workers and farmers – hand hygiene in normal circumstances is challenging. In the midst of a pandemic it can be the difference between life… and death.
As we’ve been told so many times this year, hands are the major carrier of disease-causing germs. Even before COVID-19, they were carrying bacteria that can cause illnesses such as diarrhoea – the cause of death of more than 297,000 children under 5 each year. We were also being encouraged to wash our hands more often. But here’s the problem, even though we’ve known for years that handwashing with soap reduces the risk of diarrheal diseases by 42-47%, 1 in 3 primary schools still don’t have handwashing facilities.