Reflections from our winning poo-ets

Nov 16, 2011



Jeremy Chambers models Clean the World's prize for poo-etic brilliance.



How does it feel to be a Poo Haiku champion? We already know that our winners have a way with words, so we'll let them do the talking.


Matt Gomez, Clean the World


The winning haiku:


Thunder down under

Got the dysentery blues

Can you spare a square?


It's an honor to be positively recognized for using “potty words” in otherwise polite conversation. For the sake of art and fun, we have transformed the time-honored haiku into a humorous vessel with which to share an important message of prevention regarding hygiene-related diseases. Clean the World is proud to recycle soaps to help prevent transmission of diarrheal diseases and save lives. We are pleased to partner with to help spread the word without spreading the disease. Soap saves lives.


I poo, so do you.

Celebrate the Number 2.

But we're number 1.



Erin Hohlfelder, ONE Campaign


The winning haiku:


Fact: Diarrhea

kills 1.3 million kids

each year. Holy sh*t.


Friends who know me well know that I have what you might call an immature sense of humor.  Bathroom jokes have always cracked me up, and my appreciation for such humor has only grown as I've worked in global health for ONE and spent time living in the developing world.  There's something uniquely jarring and humbling about spending an extended period of time without indoor plumbing—you have to learn to “go with the flow,” so to speak, and make light of what are otherwise uncomfortable topics: poor sanitation and diarrhea.  But I'm keenly aware that for many, the subject is truly taboo—something disgusting or, at best, impolite.  And from an advocacy perspective, when raising awareness is paramount and yet you can't even mention the topic without alienating most of your listeners, you're in for a tough sell.  So, if sharing Twitter haikus about diarrheal disease helps make the conversation more lighthearted—and therefore makes it easier to have a real conversation about the problem and the solutions—then I'm all in favor.  Thanks to PATH for this fun and oddly fitting honor! 



Mike McQuestion, Sabin Vaccine Institute


The winning haiku:


A child brims with life

but that life so quickly ebbs

without ORS


Oral rehydration therapy (ORT) is a cause dear to my heart. As a Peace Corps volunteer in the Philippines, I watched my neighbor's child die of diarrheal dehydration. I completely missed the severity of the case. As a Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) Technical Officer, I helped introduce oral rehydration solution (ORS) packets to Latin America in the early 80s. Does that offset the loss of Eusibio's beloved son? I would like to think so. Every life saved is a victory.



Congratulations to our winning poo-ets! Thanks for everything you do to for the health of children everywhere!