Wetskills Celebrates World Water Day



In December 1992, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a resolution proclaiming 22 March yearly as World Water Day. Since its inception in 1993, UN-Water, the UN’s coordination mechanism on water and sanitation, has been annually setting the theme for World Water Day. This year, the focus is on “Leveraging Water for Peace.”

The Wetskills Foundation takes great pride in contributing to these global efforts through our flagship initiative, the Wetskills Water Challenge. Since our inaugural event at the World Expo 2010 in Shanghai, China, we have organised challenges in 30 countries. These challenges foster collaboration within diverse, transdisciplinary teams to address real-life water issues, with cases that resonate with the UN’s actions for water security, such as reducing pollution, undertaking clean-up efforts, conserving water, stimulating water curiosity, promoting advocacy, and improving sanitation.

This year, we’re accelerating our efforts under the WetsNext banner. We’re not only focusing on the initial challenge but also follow-up projects. In collaboration with case owners, we’re evaluating the feasibility of concepts generated during the Wetskills challenges, crafting implementation plans, and, in some cases, implementing the solutions devised by our participants.

Water can serve as a tool for peace when communities and countries cooperate over this shared, precious resource. A prime example of this cooperation is the solution developed by participants at the Wetskills 2018 event in Cape Town, aimed at securing the water future of South Africa and Lesotho through actions primarily undertaken in Lesotho. This project contributes, in a small way, to the continued security of the Lesotho Highlands Water Project, which supplies a large portion of water to Gauteng, South Africa.

Conversely, water can also spark and intensify conflicts when access is denied, or usage is unfairly shared. With over 1630 recorded incidents since 2500 BC, a recent example being the dispute over water in the Nile Basin, it’s clear that water can be a source of conflict. While our individual actions toward peace negotiations may be limited, our collective efforts can make significant strides. You can explore more about these conflicts through the Water Conflict Chronology at World Water.

The Wetskills Foundation is committed to raising awareness and solving the water crisis, one case at a time. With a growing network of 1300 alums, we hope we can help secure our water future and leverage water for peace.

For more information on our initiatives and how you can get involved, visit our website:

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