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Thousands of students from all schools across Costa Rica today washed their hands simultaneously taking part in the Global Handwashing Day, an event celebrated around the world each year on October 15th.

The main event took place at the school Juan Santamaria in Curridabat with the participation of the minister of Education, Leonardo Garnier and the minister of Health, Daisy Corrales.

Costa Rica hopes to break the Guinness World Record of “Most people washing their hands – multiple locations”. The most people washing their hands in multiple locations was 740,870 in an event organized by the Pan American Health Organization, Region of the Americas, at multiple venues in Argentina, Mexico and Peru on 14 October 2011.

The results will be known in January when Guinness announces the official count.

Global Handwashing Day aims to raise awareness about the benefits of handwashing with soap. The theme for 2013 is “The Power is in Your Hands!”, as everyone has the power to create healthier communities through handwashing with soap.

Global Handwashing Day was originally created for children and schools, but can be celebrated by anyone promoting handwashing with soap.

Each year, over 200 million people are involved in celebrations in over 100 countries around the world. Global Handwashing is endorsed by a wide array of governments, international institutions, civil society organizations, NGOs, private companies, and individuals.