A new Wetskills, a new challenge!
Bishkek, 15 Oct 2018
Welcome to this exciting Wetskills Kyrgyzstan 2018 in the green city Bishkek. It is the first time we meet as 25 students from Europe and Kyrgyzstan and experts from 6 different Kyrgyz universities.
The Kyrgyz National Agrarian University (KNAU) was the host of the Opening ceremony of Wetskills. After an introductory talk from Prof. Chortonbaev T.Zh (Vice-Rector KNAU), Mr. Beishekeev (World Bank Project Director National Water resources Management Project Phase 1) and Machtelijn Brummel (Wetskills Foundation) and keynotes from the experts (Prof. Bekboeva R.S., KNAU, Prof. Loginov G.I., KRSU, Dr. Kulenbekov Zh., AUCA, Dr. Mambetov E.M., KSUCTA), we made a visit to the KNAU Faculty of Irrigation Engineering, Ecology and Land Management water museum. It was very beautiful and made with a lot of eye for details. The museum is surprisingly interactive as they try to explain the local water issues for school children with toys when they come and visit.
We were honoured by the local university and enjoyed a nice “coffee break”, which was more like a extensive breakfast. Great food with sharing good stories.
After that we went by bus to Ala Archa National Park, which is stunningly beautiful mountain area with peaks of more than 4000 meters. Fresh air felt so good and we made a walk along the river. It was very cold, even for Kyrgyz students, as there was already snow in the mountains. This nature area has more 40 types of animals such as deer. With the snow leopard being the most special.
From a personal view, we are excited to see a lot of water related places in Kyrgyzstan and are so much looking forward to start working on the cases provided by our sponsor, World Bank.
For some of us, it is the first time to meet and talk so closely with international students. The atmosphere in the group is so good. We already sang Kyrgyz and Dutch songs in the bus and everybody try to learn more and speak English.
We hope to learn much more during this project about water and the issues here in Kyrgyzstan. We have to learn to understand the problems here in Kyrgyzstan and at the same time share our knowledge to help others. And we have to come up with more out of the box ideas to solve these issues. We feel that Wetskills is a good opportunity to make this possible and we are very great full that we can participate.
By Kennard Burer and Sultan Alibaev