Water Asia 2000
Water empowers women


Urban floods: are they inevitable?
Small grants facility


Small efforts pay big dividends


Rebirth of rainwater in Texas
Ashram has ashtray for water also
The half-round PVC rainwater system


Tankas secure Dwarka's existence


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Vol. 2                                    No. 5                         October 2000

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Water Asia 2000 – CSE’s stall on water harvesting
Water Asia 2000: Yet another effort of CSE to sensitise people regarding the potential of water harvesting

Water Asia 2000 was organised in New Delhi between 18th and 20th of September. The Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) was the only NGO to participate. Apart from India were participants from Japan, US, Italy and several other countries. While all the other participants exhibited technologies for water treatment, wastewater treatment, pumps, valves, pipes, and heavy duty machinery, CSE’s stall was unique. It emphasised on the need and potential of water harvesting. Both in rural and urban areas. Centrally located, the stall displayed several panels pertaining to rural and urban water harvesting. One of the panels exhorted communities to think: water problems? Don’t look down, look up, basically exhorting people to tap rainwater. Three water-related films – one on pollution in the river Yamuna, one on the revival of the Arvari river in Alwar district of Rajasthan and one entitled ‘Water Works India,’ based on four water harvesters were shown through the day.

In spite of the fact that the exhibition centered around technology and hardware, several visitors thronged the stall. These included business persons, professionals, students and others. Given below are some of the comments by the visitors.

You should create awareness amongst children also through publications, audiovisuals and gamesS K Jain, Jaipur

Most informative stall A Seshadri, SULABH, New Delhi

Interested to be involved S K Singh, Delhi College of Engineering, New Delhi

Keep it up A K Sharma, New Delhi

Good showS Srivastava, New Delhi

The depiction of subject matter is impressive. The costs of the publications are however quite high Rajiv Garg, Delhi Jal Board, New Delhi

Very interesting stall, the video presentations are very informative Santiago Rodrigues, Spain Embassy, New Delhi

Good, educatuive, analytical effort by CSEG S Sidhu, Chandigarh

Good information on rainwater harvesting A K Nehera, PHED, Madhya Pradesh

Its nice to see an NGO amongst all the companies Kartikya Sarabhai, Centre for Environment Education, Ahmedabad

Impressive – as always – Embassy of Sweden

Excellent stall - S Prakasam, Gobi Press, Sivakasi

Informative as always. Keep up the good work UNICEF, New Delhi

It  will be great if more and more people are educated on the need and methods to conserve water through efforts like these D Sridhar, MLA, Andhra Pradesh

An excellent show to help people (from laypersons to experts) understand the basics of rainwater harvesting, from principles to actual implementationD Pitaliya, Pitaliya Watertech Industries, Sangli

Water empowers women
Self-Employed Women’s Association (SEWA), an Ahmedabad based   organisation has launched a water campaign in Gujarat to empower women, the primary user group, to demand a safe and sustainable water supply at the village level. The campaign works towards integrating the three Ws — women, water and work. Mobilising women to manage local water resources has made this possible, resulting in enhancing income levels and creating new economic opportunities.

As part of SEWA’s water campaign, women have successfully constructed plastic-lined pond and rooftop water harvesting tanks in a number of arid villages. Efforts have been also made towards implementing watershed development measures to conserve water. Unused wells are being repaired, tanks de-silted and checkdams constructed. Women have formed water committees and set up water funds for the maintenance of water structures. There have been instances where women have been trained as ‘barefoot technicians’ to repair and maintain handpumps.

The impact of SEWA’s intervention is apparent with the transformation in the socio-economic conditions of the villages. Apart from developing water sources at the village level, women have largely benefited from the employment opportunities generated at the local level. Women have been employed in artisan work, handicrafts, gum collection and salt manufacture in naturally hostile terrains. Productivity levels have increased, which in turn has led to enhanced incomes and increased savings. The other benefits of this water initiative have been exemplified in form of improved women’s health, which normally is the lowest in the priority; safe motherhood; safe childbirth; lower infant mortality; increased social security for woman and child; and, most importantly, reduced migration during the lean season. Augmentation of water sources has also ensured food and fodder security.

SEWA’s is an example of what the collective strength of women can achieve. In order to replicate this example and to deal with water there is a need to integrate the requirements of the stakeholders, facilitate capital formation, build capacities of women organisations and promote social security.

For further information
Reema Nanavaty, Self-Employed
Women’s Association,
Opposite Lok Manya Tilak Baug, Bhadra,
Ahmedabad – 380 001
Tel: 6506444, 5506491, 5506447, 5507365