WiL World Water Day 2023

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Water is Life goes to school!

The United Nations World Water Day is always on the 22nd of March. In 2023, your local Water is Life team decided to take our project’s – and the UN’s – messages to school children in Antiskari and Pompia.

World Water Day 2023 event in Pompia.
(Photo: WiL Volunteer Leoni Albrecht)

Our “method” was: Bring our volunteer firefighters together with professional ones from the Messara Plain – and let them share with the children about:

  • How to be “fire safe”
  • The big problem with our fresh water supply (that we are running out of it!)
  • Things they can choose to do to help save and protect our water – and their futures.
Children and their teachers listen to the firefighters in Pompia. (Photo: WiL Volunteer GBK)
Firefighters sharing with children in Antiskari. Download the ” Choose your actions” follow-up activity (on the left) to do with your children, grandchildren, students, or for yourself!
(Photo: WiL Volunteer Walter Elsner)

The events were very successful. The children listened very attentively afterwards, they could ask questions. In Pompia, the children also had the chance to explore a real firetruck and “be” a firefighter themselves.

Before the event, WiL volunteers Anja Mikola-Dobbler (concept) and Voula Loukadaki (artist) collaborated on this amazing poster. It’s called: “A future with water is a future with life.” Take a closer look!

The past:  Until recently, the freshwater supply from the Asterousia Mountain underground aquifers was plentiful and pristine. People used the water carefully and took care that the aquifers were refilled with the available rainwater. There was a good balance between the available water supply – and people’s demand for it.

Look how full the underground aquifer is! (In reality, you cannot see it with your eyes. Here, Voula shows it at the bottom of each picture.)

The Present: Today, we are using (and wasting) more and more water. At the same time, we have mostly stopped collecting/harvesting rainwater. We’ve also created conditions that make it hard or impossible for rain to seep into the ground and find its way to our freshwater supply. Today, the supply and demand are completely out of balance. Our aquifers are DANGEROUSLY LOW. So low in fact, that there is a grave risk of salty sea water getting into our fresh water supply.

Now, the water level in the aquifer is very low…

The Future(s): If we keep acting the way we are now, we will have a very “dead” future in this area: salt in the freshwater supply and dry, barren land. It is called desertification. It is the future we are headed for very fast. However, we can shape a different future – the future we want.

The future without water. The aquifer is empty.

In it, people are all working together to protect and preserve our fresh water supply – the basis of our life. We’re reducing our water demands, “recycling” our so-called “grey” water, and taking care not to pollute our water (including with our plastic waste!) At the same time, we are refilling the supply – the aquifers – and making good use of the rain we get. We’re restoring the balance.

Let’s work together to have this future with water, a future with life.

The volunteers plan to give more presentations in local schools in the coming school year. (Contact us if “your” school is interested!) Soon, WiL leadership will begin planning for our next World Water Day events/activities. Ideas? Let us know in the Water Talk blog!

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