Plea for Port Douglas resorts to stop wasting soap


Howard Salkow

Senior Journalist

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Port Douglas hotels and resorts are being asked to recycle their soap to help save lives. IMAGE: Supplied.

PORT Douglas hotels and resorts are being encouraged to support Soap Aid, a program that involves collecting discarded or partially-used soap for recycling instead of adding it to landfill.

And Soap Aid, a Melbourne-based not-for-profit organisation, then collects, sorts, cleans and recycles the discarded soap and sends it to communities across the world without access to adequate sanitation.

The Port Douglas Ramada Resort has already joined the project.

“Soap Aid’s humanitarian and environmental mission is made possible through its partnership with Rotary Clubs around Australia and the hotel industry.

“Any clean, non-glycerine bar soap is acceptable for recycling and every bit counts. Once the soap has been reprocessed into new, lifesaving bars they are distributed locally and overseas to communities in need,” said Renata Musson, on behalf of Soap Aid.

She said they are about to launch the program in Port Douglas and surrounds with pledged support from Douglas Shire Council (DSC), Tourism Port Douglas & Daintree (TPDD), Mossman Rotary, the Neighbourhood Centre, Northline freight, QUBE Logistics, and individual community members.

“The aim is to encourage the significant accommodation industry of Douglas Shire (and eventually Cairns) to become involved through Who is Soap Aid?”

Every year more than 1.4 million children die due to hygiene-related illnesses. Washing hands with soap can reduce the incidence of diseases such as diarrhoea and pneumonia by up to 40 per cent and can literally save lives.

Soap donations have included:

•  Soap Aid is currently working with the WA Country Health Service to deliver soap to some 63 remote Aboriginal communities to help eradicate trachoma which is still endemic in some communities. Over 100,000 bars of soap arrived in Perth in mid-March for the WA Country Health Service ‘Squeaky Clean Kids’ program and the first deliveries have made their way out to communities near Kalgoorlie and Meekatharra;

•  Five tonnes of donated soap to Fiji after Cyclone Winston to help prevent the spread of diseases;

•  Twelve tonnes of soap to two different organisations in Cambodia (three tonnes to Caring for Cambodia and nine tonnes to Eco-Soap Bank) who work with communities and schools to improve access to hygiene and provide proper hygiene education;

•  12,000 bars to Vanuatu Ministry of Health to support their work with Neglected Tropical Diseases;

•  50,000 bars to Somalia through World Vision to assist with hygiene for a cholera outbreak due to severe drought;

•  Small donations to organisations working in Uganda, Papua New Guinea and the Philippines.

For further information, contact Ambassador Barbara Sargeant on 0407 173 943 or

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