JICA and Hello Kitty promote handwashing with the Achhi Aadat (Good Habit) Campaign
New Delhi (India), February 8: Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) India held a two-day event to promote handwashing with soap with the famous Japanese character Hello Kitty in Delhi on Wednesday, November 9 and Thursday, November 10 2022, as a part of the ‘Achhi Aadat (Good Habit) Campaign’, with implementation partner IJ Kakehashi Services Pvt. Ltd.
Hello Kitty is a world-renowned character of Sanrio Company Ltd., known for her adorable looks and kindness towards others. In recent years, Hello Kitty has expanded her focus to the promotion of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through her YouTube Channel (HELLO KITTY CHANNEL). The United Nations (UN) has acknowledged her dedication and since September 2019, Hello Kitty in collaboration with the UN, has introduced SDG engagement around the world through her informative and interesting videos.
Hello Kitty and Sanrio are partners of JICA India’s Achhi Aadat Campaign, which was launched in January 2021 to raise awareness among the population regarding hygiene practices, including handwashing and nail cleaning. Since 2021, Hello Kitty has participated in online ‘Achhi Aadat sessions’ and interacted with children to share the importance of proper handwashing with soap. Hello Kitty is currently visiting India for the first time along with Ms. TSUJI Yuko, Managing Executive Officer, Global Sustainability Department Director of Sanrio, and has been participating in person in Achhi Aadat sessions and various campaign activities.
In the morning of Wednesday November 9, Hello Kitty appeared in front of around 900 primary school students at The Mother’s International School, Delhi. The students were surprised to see the special guest and welcomed her with great enthusiasm. Hello Kitty demonstrated the eight steps of handwashing while dancing to the music of her video “Let’s Wash Our Hands with HELLO KITTY!!” She held another handwashing session in Central Park in Connaught Place in the afternoon, to bring smiles to the faces of 30 students from St. James Convent School run by the NGO Asha Deep Foundation. Hello Kitty then boarded the Delhi Metro from Rajiv Chowk Station to Patel Chowk Station and experienced riding on a female-only coach. At the Patel Chowk Station, she was greeted by Mr. Vikas Kumar, Managing Director of Delhi Metro Rail Corporation, Mr. SAITO Mitsunori, Chief Representative of JICA India, and 15 students of Sarthak Prayas, an NGO-run school, who learned the eight steps of handwashing with Hello Kitty. On Thursday November 10, she visited the iconic India Gate where she observed two out of the 1000 auto rickshaws specially wrapped with the Achhi Aadat Campaign message on their hood.
On 30th January 2023, Sanrio has launched a video introducing India and the Achhi Aadat Campaign. Click on the link below to view the video!!
Video Link: “Kitty made a surprise appearance at a handwashing event in India!” Kitty made a surprise appearance at a handwashing event in India! [Hello Kitty] https://youtu.be/371lSMThC9w
Speaking on the occasion, Mr. SAITO Mitsunori, Chief Representative, JICA India said, “Dear Hello Kitty, thank you so much for coming all the way to India!! How was dancing in the Connaught Place, visiting India Gate by rickshaw? Good boys and girls you played together will never forget how to wash their hands and live healthy lives. Please come visit India again to enjoy delicious Indian sweets and desserts! Safe journey!”
In 2021, Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) launched the Achhi Aadat Campaign to spread various hygienic practices among the population in India. Amid COVID 19 situation, the campaign encouraged consistent and appropriate handwashing techniques, nail cleaning, and other hygiene practices.
In continuation, in 2022, JICA in partnership with its project implementing partner IJ Kakehashi Services Private Limited, collaborates with the Government of NCT of Delhi, and private Japanese companies, NGOs, and has flagged off the wonderful voyage to create awareness among the people of India.
Established, by a specific law, as an incorporated administrative, as the sole Japanese governmental agency in charge of ODA implementation. JICA is the world’s largest bilateral donor agency. JICA works as a bridge between Japan and emerging countries like India and provides assistance in the form of loans, grants, and technical cooperation so that emerging countries can strengthen their capabilities.