In the capital Suva, children from nine schools took part in contests organized by the Ministry of Infrastructure and Meteorological Services and UNICEF to mark the day.
“The World Water Day celebration is a platform to advocate the importance of water in our lives. Let’s use water wisely. Let’s conserve water for us and for the future.
Let’s work hand in hand with the government in replanting our forests and conserving our forests for our water resources and for the eco system and for our survival,” said the Minister for Infrastructure and Meteorological Services, Hon. Jone Usamate.
Today, potable water is under extreme threat from a growing population, increasing demands of agriculture and industry as well as the worsening impacts of climate change. In Fiji, 94 percent of people have access to basic drinking water services.
This year’s World Water Day is an opportunity to focus on the importance of water in our lives and the Sustainable Development Goal Six – to achieve water and sanitation for all by 2030.
Students from primary and secondary levels, including St. Anne’s Primary School, Holy Trinity Primary School, Suva Methodist Primary School, Yat Sen Primary and Secondary School, Marist Brothers Primary and Secondary School, Jai Narayan College and Dudley High School joined the conversation about what water means to them, and highlighted how the value of water is about much more than its price.
Water has enormous and complex value for households, food, culture, health, education, economies and the integrity of the natural environment. “Valuing and understanding the importance of water is critical to ensure equal access for all to clean drinking water, as well as for improved overall health, especially for our children,” said Sheldon Yett, UNICEF Pacific Representative.
“We thank the Ministry of Infrastructure and Meteorological Services, and partners, for joining us and using the World Water Day as an opportunity to take action on the issue of water security in the Pacific.”
This event was supported by the Ministry of Health and Medical Services, Ministry of Education, Heritage and Arts, Ministry of Women, Children and Poverty Alleviation, Ministry of Rural and Maritime Development and Disaster Management, Ministry of iTaukei Affairs, Ministry for Lands and Mineral Resources, Water Authority of Fiji, Save the Children, Live and Learn, Pleass Global Limited, Rotary Pacific Water, Habitat for Humanity Fiji and Partners in Community Development Fiji.
The Ministry of Infrastructure and Meteorological Services also acknowledges the valuable support from various donor and key stakeholders for improvements of water, sanitation and hygiene in Fiji including the Government of United Kingdom, Government of Australia, Government of New Zealand, Government of the Republic of Korea, Government of Japan and the European Union.