World Rivers Day is a celebration of the world's waterways. It highlights the many values of rivers and strives to increase public awareness and encourages the improved stewardship of rivers around the world.
“Rivers are the arteries of our planet; they are lifelines in the truest sense.”
~ Mark Angelo
On the 27th of September 2018, 13 countries were represented at a World Rivers Day event which included a River Health Assessment, Turbidity measurement, Bio-monitoring and a Velocity and discharge measure. Delegates participated actively in all events and discovered that although compromised by pollution from the surrounding city of Johannesburg, the river was not in too bad a state.
All delegates were also part of a four day SADC WaterNet course on Monitoring and Communication. With funding support gratefully acknowledged from Britain and Germany (GIZ) the course was conducted by GroundTruth. In addition to learning about monitoring and communication, each delegate developed a Change Project through which all learnings on the course could be implemented to enhance their work and commitments back in their country of origin.
On the final day of the certificated course a Regional River Manifesto was developed by the course participants. The manifesto is thus providing a focus, vision and strategic direction for cooperation at a regional level. Participants noted and adapted an ancient Chinese proverb which seemed relevant to the course “Tell me and I forget, involve me and I change forever.”