Orlando Magic Help 'Clean the World' and Save Lives

By Josh Cohen
July 28, 2016

ORLANDO -- Ever curious about what happens to all those leftover travel size hygiene products from hotel bathrooms after you check out?

Well, they once were discarded and went straight to the landfill. But since 2009, bars of soap, bottles of shampoo and other personal cleansing amenities are getting recycled and donated to those in need.

Clean the World, the leaders in global hygiene revolution, collects thousands of these essentials from hotels across the U.S. and then distributes them both domestically and internationally.

On Thursday, July 28, the Orlando Magic assisted in the process. Community Ambassadors Nick Anderson and Bo Outlaw and other Magic volunteers helped sort, package and box thousands of products.

“This is great to see all the volunteers giving their time and efforts to help distribute these products to the less fortunate,” Anderson said. “I’m just happy to be a part of it and to help others get things that we take for granted.”

The impact is extraordinary. Since the program began seven years ago, the number of fatalities among youth from various illnesses and diarrheal-related diseases has reduced by a whopping 35 percent. An estimated 9,000 children died each day from these health issues in 2009. Now, that total has dropped to approximately 5,500.

“People don’t know they are doing a good deed when they are in the hotel and using half of these products,” Outlaw said. “It’s awesome they are not letting it go to waste. They are actually putting it toward a good cause.”

The targeted recipients of these amenities are maternal health programs, schools, community health providers and nutrition programs. Clean the World, which initially started in a single-car garage in downtown Orlando, has sent 35 million bars of soap to 100 countries.

Hand hygiene is known to prevent infections. It is estimated that washing hands with soap and water could reduce diarrheal disease-associated deaths by up to 50 percent and could diminish the chance of respiratory infections by 16 percent, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

With these statistics so powerful and problematic, it’s imperative for underprivileged families and children to have the basic amenities such as soap to stay healthy.

“The goal is to eradicate those two top killers of children (pneumonia and diarrheal disease),” Clean the World Founder and CEO Shawn Seipler said. “It’s incredible (to see the Magic here). They are helping us advance the mission. It’s an inspiration and a boost to our employees. Our folks being able to see that Bo Outlaw and Nick Anderson and everybody with Magic shirts on in our facility validates what they are doing every day. It’s a huge boost all the way around for us.”