Water for All; Leaving No One Behind
Men, women, transgender, single women, people with disabilities, adolescent girls and the elderly gathered in large numbers at the Vani Vihar Kinner (transgender) Basti to observe World Water Day 2019. Based on this year’s theme “Leaving No One Behind”, they discussed and deliberated on measures to be taken to tackle water crisis faced by the urban poor and create awareness about water conservation.
CFAR organized the meet in collaboration with Swabhiman, HelpAge India, Sakha, RTI and supported by Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade or DFAT, Australia and Water for Women Fund on the eve of World Water Day, March 21. Addressing the meet, Meera Parida, President of Sakha, transgender CBO and Mihir Mohanty, Program Manager, Swabhiman, NGO of persons with disabilities emphasized the need for inclusive sanitation
Lopamudra Panda, WaSH Expert, PR Department? said “Everyone has to use water judiciously so that we can save water for our future.” Lalit Badhai, Project Manager, Piramal Sarvajal announced: “Piramal is soon going to install water ATMs in 10 slums. We will try to include the settlements having severe drinking water stress,” he said.
“We had to carry water in trolley from nearby settlements for drinking purpose. Thanks to Piramal and the Single Window facilitated by CFAR for installing water ATM near our basti, now we are getting pure water for drinking,” said transgender leader Madhuri Maa. She appealed Piramal to increase the quantity of water to 20 litres per card from 10 litres.
“Water is basic necessity of all, but still many people in urban and rural pocket are deprived of getting pure drinking water. In urban slums, though people are getting water supply but the quality of water is not up to mark. Also the marginalized group i.e. women, PWDs, elderly and adolescent girls face difficulty in getting water if it’s not available nearby. Also excluded groups i.e. SC & ST often face discrimination in accessing water. So, we should work towards inclusive approach to guarantee that where everyone gets the minimum service for their healthy life”, Samir Dash, CFAR
Prior to the event, community representatives and Community Management Committee members were asked to write slogans on water, and a collage of all the slogans was displayed. The best slogan award that went to Pramodini Moharana from Basti Bikas Parisar captured the feelings of the community by declaring “Jeu Jala Lagi Jiba Jagata,Taku Na Kariba Bisakta” or “Water is the Cause of Existence of all Beings, It cannot be made into Poison”
Receiving the award, she said, “There is no scarcity of water in our settlement but the quality is not good. So, if we can get water ATM facility for drinking purpose, then we will feel hugely relieved.”
The meet ended with all participants taking an oath to save water and mobilise at least five people for the same.