Aurat Publication & Information Service Foundation
Launching Ceremony of Women Water Network Quetta & Women's Colloquium, Quetta, Quetta


Launching Ceremony of Women Water Network Quetta & Women's Colloquium, Quetta

Aurat Foundation Quetta organized a launching ceremony of Women Water Network and Women's Colloquium with Hisaar Foundation on 6th November, 2019 in Aurat Foundation office, Quetta.

The objective of this activity is to engage organizations and woman individually who are active in the areas of water and sanitation, sustainable development, women's participation and empowerment. The members may be rural women, academia, women water professionals, and businesswomen to service organizations and special interest groups. Women as active leaders, partners, experts and agents of change in water are highly appreciated to join.

The meeting started with the recitation of Holy Quran. Mr. Allauddin Khilji, Resident Director Aurat Foundation Quetta welcomed the participants and introduction of participants. He has given the brief introduction on formation and set up Women Water Network. After this, Dr. Ziviqar Deputy Director, PCRWR has given a brief presentation titled "Role of Pakistani women around water table and why women are important to pursue in water sector".

Mr. Allauddin Khilji, explained the global trends of water and the role of women in this area. He highlighted many names who are contributing their life for this cause. Further, he explained the role of Pakistani women around water table. Discussion was held for the conservation of water and participants shared their achievement and thoughts. Mr. Khilji said that establishing effective strategies to ensure the proper utilization of available water resources, so that timely preparation can be made to tackle the implications of changing climate in Balochistan. He said that the role in the consultation and decision making process of women in shaping water policy in Balochistan is critical. “Water resources are shrinking around the world and the need to ensure careful use of globally available water resources is emphasized. He added that this would be the first women water network of its kind established in Balochistan to raise awareness among the women of Balochistan.

Ms. Fatima Nangyal, Focal person of Human Rights Defender said that women in Balochistan face more difficulties in accessing water compare to other provinces.

Ms. Saima Javaid, Gender Specialist Tameer-e-Khalq Foundation said that the majority of women in Balochistan have the primary responsibility of bringing and using water to their homes, but in rural areas, water is not safe according to hygiene principles.

Mr. Khilji said that over 2 billion people live in countries experiencing high water stress. Worldwide, over 80% of all wastewater returns to the environment without being treated (WWAP, 2017). The increase in demand for irrigation for agriculture has led to severe groundwater stress in some areas, especially in two of Asia's major food baskets, India and China. Gender inequalities in access to water are large and persistent in many countries. He also highlighted that Water planners choose amongst competing uses. Women don't have a formal voice in the sector therefore domestic use is given least priority. Often irrigation schemes are conducted with landowners therefore women are left out of the equation

Participants discussed inherent and historical role of women in preservance, usage and distribution of water resources with a view to maintain and strengthen it. They also proposed interventions at research, policy advocacy and grassroots' mobilisation for ensuring women's role in water crisis solutions. Many examples are shared that how small behavioral change lead to big evolution. The participants appreciated the work and had given their valuable input in this regard. They devoted that Little Drops of Water Make a Mighty Ocean.

In the end of event, it was decided by the members of the network to hold monthly meeting in connection with network. It was also decided that an executive committee will be comprised of four members in the next meeting of network, while Mr. Allauddin Khilji from AF will provide secretarial support to WWN Balochistan. More than 30 participants attended the event. They were from academia, public offices, civil society, law, media, individual experts, and representatives of women alliances.