WORLD WATER DAY - 22 March
The International World Water Day (WWD) is held annually on 22nd March to focus attention on water and advocating its uses in a sustainable manner, globally.
The year 2011 is declared by UN as “Water & Urbanization”. The objective of WWD-2011 is to focus international attention on the impact of rapid growth of population particularly at urban level, industrialization, and uncertainty caused by climate change, conflicts and natural disasters.
The first WWD was declared on 22nd March 1993 by UN General Assembly.
Water is a precious commodity and needs to be preserved and justifiably managed. 70% of the earth’s surface is covered by water, 97.5 % of all water on earth is salt water, only 2.5 % is fresh water. Less than 1% of world’s fresh water is accessible for direct use. This water is found in reservoirs, lakes, rivers and underground sources. Only this amount is regularly renewed by rain and snowfall.
HCDI has been vigorously promoting awareness programmes for preservation of the available water both on surface and underground through various programmes covering 17 Northern States of India
HCDI has piloted a comprehensive water harvesting programme in drought prone areas of Dahod district in Gujarat way back in the year 2002 – 2005 and has achieved tremendous success in recharging the ground water reserves.
HCDI has promoted and harnessed water harvesting and preservation in more than 300 villages, advocating judicious use of water both for consumption and crop irrigation which has direct impact on the economy and the living standards of people especially the marginalized and poor communities. HCDI has enabled the communities to build water harvesting bodies such as; ponds, check dams, earthen nalla / boulder bunds, trenches, check weirs covering 6500 hectares, installing more than 100 water harvesting structures for communities who have no access to portable water, constructed 250 wells and drilled / repaired more than 200 bore wells. This has mitigated the hardships of rural women who had to walk several kms. in a day to fetch 2 pots of water. This also facilitates children and their families to have regular bath, wash clothes and protect themselves from diseases.
HCDI continues to lobby, advocate and promote awareness on:
1. Access to available water for basic human needs which needs to be fully acknowledged as a top priority by policy makers.
2. Water related diseases like diarrhea, malaria and typhoid and how it can be prevented.
3. Use of water towards irrigation to improve crop production by the farming community.