Happy World Water Day! Celebrate World Water Day with Partners for Development!
Today we mark the 22nd annual World Water Day. The theme: ‘Water and Sustainable Development.’ On 28 July 2010, through Resolution 64/292, the United Nations General Assembly explicitly recognized the human right to water and sanitation and acknowledged that clean drinking water and sanitation are essential to the realization of all human rights. And yet 748 million people still lack access to improved sources of drinking water (UN, 2014). Read on to find out how PFD celebrates World Water Day every day and what YOU can do to make an impact.
PFD has a long history working to improve Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH) services and uses a local capacity building approach to ensure that the
WASH programming leads to sustainable development. In Cambodia, PFD has reached over 160,000 rural residents and increased access to clean water, hygiene and sanitation services. From 1992-2002 PFD assisted in the formation of 300 Village Development Committees, installed over 5,000 community and household water points and 1,200 latrines, as well as rehabilitating 199 rural schools, establishing 64 community rice banks and creating a family gardening program involving 1,627 families.
In partnership with UNICEF, PFD is now working in three states of Nigeria (Delta, Edo and Ekiti States) to strengthen the capacity of local Institutions and WASH committees (WASHCOM) to drive Community-Centered WASH Service Delivery. PFD has trained 163 LGA-Level facilitators on implementation of Expanded Guidelines for Local WASH Committees (WASHCOM) Formation and Training on Community WASH Management. By engaging these local committees and local organizations, such as the Rural Water Supply and Sanitation Agency (RUWASSA), PFD ensures that the communities are fully involved in their own development and enables them to create locally based solutions to meet the most pressing community needs. PFD will continue to engage with the identified WASHCOMS, delivering training and supporting the community groups to register and become connected at the federation level. Through trainings to strengthen local and regional organizational capacity, local communities will be able to share their progress and lessons learned as well as brainstorm new solutions.
Elsewhere, such as in Benin, PFD is enabling farmers to implement better irrigation techniques for their farms. Through USDA’s Growing Resources for Enhanced Agricultural Enterprises and Nutrition (GREEN), PFD has facilitated trainings on improved cultivation techniques including irrigation, and increased farmers’ access to credit to implement the trainings. Over 70% of the water withdrawn from rivers and aquifers across the world is used in agriculture, so improving irrigation techniques can help protect this precious resource (FAO).
“Approximately 10% of the global burden of disease worldwide could be prevented with improvements to water, sanitation and hygiene and better water resource management worldwide. The burden of water-related diseases falls disproportionately on developing countries and particularly on children under five, with 30% of deaths of these children attributable to inadequate access to water and sanitation” (OECD, 2011)
What can you do?
If you have read this far, you have already learned more about the importance of water for the world and its importance for sustainable development! You too can make an impact on World Water day. Continue to celebrate World Water Day by sharing on social media and tagging @Partners4dev on Twitter or following us on Facebook. Support Partners for Development WASH programming and our other projects around the globe and donatehere.