The National Water Week campaign is aimed at raising awareness around the need to protect and conserve the country’s water resources and our collective responsibility towards water conservation initiatives.  The campaign is celebrated from 15 to 22 March, against the backdrop of the World Water Day on 22 March. The theme for 2021 is “Valuing water” and aims to understand how people value water whether it is economically, socially, culturally or in other ways as well as how it plays a role in their lives. In 1993, the United Nations designated 22 March as the World Water Day with a focus on the importance of fresh water and to raise awareness of the billion people living without access to clean and safe water. This day is about acting to decisively deal with water challenges facing the globe – Water is a basic Human Right for all.

The Dyer Island Conservation Trust takes this opportunity of the National Water Week to embark on an awareness campaign with activities to educate the DEEP learners about the importance of water and conservation. The objectives are to:

– To highlight the importance of water

– To encourage communities to value and save water.

This year’s National Water Week campaign comes during a difficult period in our country and the world in general, when we are facing the second wave of the novel Coronavirus pandemic. While water plays an important role in fighting the virus, the devastating effects of the virus have made the world change the way things are done and a new normal is now in place.  This is the question given to all the learners to ponder about, “How does water play a role in your cultural practices, in your home and school?”

Some of the answers were: Water is essential to life. We build cities around it, cleanse, play and drink it. In most religious traditions, water is basic to physical and spiritual life, symbolizing purification, rebirth, and fertility. Water is used in religious rituals, either for bathing, washing, drinking, or as a sacrifice. Water is therefore a key element in ceremonies and religious rites. Water acts as a link between the spiritual and physical worlds, like Ukuthwasa (initiation).

In Christianity, water that has been blessed by a member of the clergy and is used in baptism and to bless individuals, churches, homes, and articles of devotion. A natural symbol of purification, water has been used by religious peoples as a means of removing uncleanness.

At school water plays a big role in sanitation, drinking and washing hands.

And some of the challenges within our local communities: There are  water challenges facing our community: water scarcity, water contamination. Reduce water pollution.

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