World Water Day, held on the 22nd of March every year since 1993, is an annual United Nations Observance focusing attention on the importance of water. This year’s theme is “Accelerating Change” to solve the water and sanitation crisis.
In 2015, the world committed to Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6 as part of the 2030 Agenda – the promise that everyone would have safely managed water and sanitation by 2030. As of now, this goal is offtrack from being attainable by 2030. Billions of people and countless schools, businesses, healthcare facilities and farms do not have access to safe, clean water and sanitation.
World Water Day 2023 asks people to “Be the change you want to see in the world”. Using an ancient story from the Quechua people in Peru, of a hummingbird who carries drops of water to put out a great forest fire, the campaign encourages people to do what they can to help solve the water and sanitation crisis.
Anyone can help make a difference by changing the way they use, consume and manage water in their daily lives. Small changes such as shorter showers and buying products with a smaller “water footprint” can make a big difference. Here are more examples of small steps you can take to make a big difference!
- Save water: Take shorter showers and don’t let the tap run when brushing your teeth, doing dishes and preparing food.
- Flush safe: Fix leaking water and waste pipes, empty full septic tanks and report dumping of sludge.
- Stop polluting: Don’t put food waste, oils, medicines and chemicals down the toilet or drains.
- Eat local: Buy local, seasonal food and look for products made with less water.
- Be curious: Find out where your water comes from and how it is shared, and visit a treatment plant to see how waste is managed.
- Protect nature: Plant a tree or create a raingarden – use natural solutions to reduce the risk of flooding and store water.
- Clean up: Take part in clean-ups of local rivers, lakes, wetlands and beaches.
Learn more about the 2023 World Water Day Campaign, access materials and toolkits and learn how you can be part of the change at www.worldwaterday.org.