Key world organisations for sustainability in Water, Sanitation and Hygiene (WASH)
Almost two in five people around the world do not have access to sanitation services and roughly one in eight do not have access to safe water. An essential element in tackling this crisis is to build the knowledge and skills of people working in this sector.
Participants have had the opportunity to share their expertise and knowledge, compare challenges and explore solutions from high-level policies to on-ground projects in relation to institutional, environmental, social and financial perspectives.
The five day program was unique, in that it comprised two days of interactive seminars and discussion groups followed by a three day training program focused on skills development for people working in the sector.
Foreign Affairs Minister Kevin Rudd said, "The absence of safe water and sanitation services and good hygiene means the poor remain stuck in grinding, abject poverty."
"This conference is an opportunity to think creatively and share knowledge and skills so that we all share the benefits of safe water, sanitation and hygiene - in a sustainable way," Mr Rudd added.
"Participants greatly benefited from the focus on participation and knowledge sharing through group discussions, workshops, and training sessions," said Mr Pascoe.
Some of the issues considered were achievement of the Millennium Development Goals relating to safe water access and sanitation, scaling-up local WASH activities so that greater numbers of people can benefit, and encouraging people to change their sanitation and hygiene behaviours.
The conference offered a great variety of presentations by leading experts, academics, managers, and field practitioners, sharing their experiences together, including:
- Clarissa Brocklehurst, Chief, Water, Sanitation and Hygiene, United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)
- Prof. Richard Carter, Head of Technical Support, WaterAid
- Dr. Val Curtis, Director, the Hygiene Centre, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine
- Jaehyang So, Manager, Water and Sanitation Program (WSP), World Bank
- Dr. Junaid Ahmad, Sector Manager, Urban Water Africa Region, World Bank
The conference was supported by the Australian Government through its overseas aid program, AusAID, and was planned by the WASH Reference Group comprised of Australian NGOs, academia and the private sector.
Further information about the WASH Conference can be found online at: http://www.watercentre.org/wash2011