NAWASA unveils 2016 World Water Day activities

A competition challenging community groups to create an art project depicting what water means to them is one of the highlight activities being promoted by the National Water and Sewerage Authority (NAWASA) in observance of World Water Day 2016, which is recognised every year on March 22.

General Manager of NAWASA, Christopher Husbands and Communications officer Jamila Williams symbolically drink water in support of Drink Water Day

General Manager of NAWASA, Christopher Husbands and Communications officer Jamila Williams symbolically drink water in support of Drink Water Day

Explaining the criteria for the competition during the launch of activities last week Tuesday at NAWASA’s Main Office in St. George’s, Communications Officer Jamila Lewis said, projects must be original, creative, and relevant to one of the following themes: “Water is work,” “Water is change,” and “Water is Art.”

According to Lewis, in order to qualify, a group must consist of “five (5) or more persons” and must ensure that the project focuses on the three ‘buzz words’ that the Authority has already coined for the remainder of the year, “storage, conservation and management.”

She stated that the projects must be done in the communities where the persons in the groups are registered.

Additionally, Lewis said the art work must be submitted to NAWASA for approval before it is revealed to the general public and groups receiving approval would be provided with a “stipend of $300” to kick start their projects, which will be judged by a selected panel of judges.

The registration process has already begun and according to Lewis, it is expected to close on April 8 following which groups would have until April 22 to submit their project ideas to NAWASA.
She noted “groups should be able to commence their project by May 16, and completed by June 17.

The judges are expected to finish their work by June 23 and announce the winners by July 31.

Apart from the $300 stipend to be paid out, the first place winner will receive a prize of $1, 000, second place $800, while third place would receive $500.

Lewis said that prizes would also be given to the largest groups, as well as the most creative artwork and the most original piece, which would be decided by the judges.

The first activity held in observance of the day, challenged the nation to let water be the only beverage they consume for the entire day.

The next activity dubbed “Keeping it Zero,” challenges a consumer to keep their bills at zero for three consecutive months – April, May and June – to qualify for an opportunity to win a storage tank.

Lewis said the first three winners in this category would receive an 800-gallon, 600 gallon and 400-gallon water tanks, respectively.

Another activity planned by the organizers is a raffle aimed at getting customers to update their customer account information for the chance to win a first place prize of $300 credit towards their water bill, second place – a dinner reservation for two (2) at a local restaurant valued at $200, and a third place prize of a portable charger compliments NAWASA.

Lewis pointed out that customers must come into the Authority’s office to update their information during the period of April 4 to May 4, which will be verified for accuracy.

“Only persons who update during this period will qualify,” she added.

According to Lewis, the final activity targets photographers and aspiring photographers, challenging them to depict via photography the following themes: “Water is art; show the world what water means to them. Water is Change, how they can make or change their world through water, or water is work, show the world how water is part of your daily job.”

Lewis noted that participants could submit a “maximum of three photos,” one for each theme and it must be original.

“So they can’t go and take someone else photo and claim that it is theirs and if they would have submitted that particular photo in a previous competition they would not be allowed to take part in NAWASA’s own. All entries will belong to NAWASA and we will use it as we deem necessary,” she remarked.

The winner of this competition would get $700, second place $500, while the third place winner would receive $300.

Additionally, there would be a people’s choice award, which will be decided via social media and the state-run body is planning to put on an exhibition to showcase the talents of the competitors.

Each year, World Water Day (March 22), is recognised globally and allows water companies to highlight the importance of water and challenges of the sector through creative activities in keeping with the United Nations designating of the first World Water Day on March 22, 1993.

According to the UN, today, almost half of the world’s workers – 1.5 billion people – work in water related sectors and nearly all jobs depend on water and those that ensure its safe delivery.

Yet the millions of people, the UN says who work in water are often not recognised or protected by basic labour rights.

This year’s observance is being recognised under the theme “Water and Jobs,” with focus on how enough quantity and quality of water can change workers’ lives and livelihoods – and even transform societies and economies.

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