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On World Water Day 2011, BSHF highlights the importance of managing freshwater resources in a sustainable way.
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Limited freshwater resources
For the first time in human history, most of the world's population now lives in cities: 3.3 billion people... and the urban landscape continues to grow.
World Water Day is held annually on 22 March and the theme of World Water Day 2011 is Water and Urbanisation.
World Water Day 2011 aims to raise awareness of the impact of rapid urban population growth and industrialisation on urban water systems. It also aims to draw attention to the impact of uncertainties caused by climate change, conflicts and natural disasters.
Innovative water management
The Water Solutions through Collective Management project in Bolivia provides an example of an innovative public-private-community partnership that has facilitated access to affordable water for 1,709 families on the outskirts of Cochabamba, Bolivia.
The supply and distribution of potable water is community-managed, and water committees with democratically elected members have been established within each community to manage the water systems.
Potable water and latrines have been provided for over 5,900 families to date as part of the Local Housing Movement Program in Egypt. The programme operates in partnership with the private sector and trains local construction workers to carry out the necessary work.
The provision of running water has had an immeasurable impact, particularly for women, who spoke of the shame and embarrassment of having to ask for water from their neighbours or wait until nightfall to relieve themselves outdoors, risking their personal safety.
The history of World Water Day
The United Nations General Assembly designated 22 March 1993 as the first World Water Day, following the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (UNCED) in 1992.
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