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Editor's Notes


Achieving Human Rights


Partnership of the Month


Program Updates


Historic Groundwater Project

On the Cover Name: Mabel Age: 18 Community: Murray Town Country: Sierra Leone Field of Study: Mass Communication Career Goal: Pubic Relations What drives my passion? The ability to serve my community, be a voice for the voiceless and change lives. My hope is to use my talents and training to champion issues like sustainable development for my community and beyond.



editor's note In the United States November is Native American Heritage Month, or as it is commonly referred to, American Indian and Alaska Native Heritage Month. The month is a time to celebrate rich and diverse cultures, traditions, and histories and to acknowledge the important contributions of Native people. Despite a painful history marked by unjust Federal policies of assimilation and termination, American Indian and Alaska Native peoples have persevered. During National Native American Heritage Month, we celebrate the countless contributions of Native peoples past and present, honor the influence they have had on the advancement of our Nation, and recommit ourselves to upholding trust and treaty responsibilities, strengthening Tribal sovereignty, and advancing Tribal self-determination. I am fortunate to spend Native American Heritage Month observing the water irrigation project on the Gila River Indian Reservation. The Gila River Indian Community was established in 1939 as the selfgoverning body for the 580-square mile Gila River Indian Reservation and runs alongside the southern border of the city of Phoenix within Pinal and Maricopa Counties. The Gila River Indian Community Department of Public Works needed to replace old and failing water lines while also expanding the existing system to account for community growth, improved water pressure, and increased fire protection flow, throughout the seven districts that make up the Gila River Indian Community. I look forward to sharing all that I have learned about water irrigation systems and the social injustices that have impacted the lives of American Indians. I leave you with this quote by Joy Har­jo, the 23rd Poet Lau­re­ate of the Unit­ed States a mem­ber of the Mvskoke Nation. She is only the sec­ond poet to be appoint­ed a third term as U.S. Poet Laureate. " My generation is now the door to memory. That is why I am remembering."

Dr. Sheryl A. Simmons EDITOR-IN-CHIEF


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Catarina de Albuquerque The CEO of the UN hosted Sanitation and Water for All Partnership 8 April 2021

People wait to get water from a communal tap, during an outbreak of coronavirus disease (COVID-19), in Portau-Prince, Haiti [Jeanty Junior Augustin/Reuters]

Ten years after the United Nations recognized water and sanitation as human rights, the world finds itself reeling from the devastating toll of COVID-19, a virus against which hand-washing and hygiene are the first lines of defense. One of the most important lessons we learned from this pandemic is that we are only as healthy as the most vulnerable members of our societies, and today, huge sections of the global population are still being left behind in their access to water, sanitation, and hygiene. Before the pandemic hit, 40 percent of the world’s population already lacked access to basic hand-washing facilities at home, and children at almost half of the world’s schools did not have water and soap. While many governments have increased the provision of public hand-washing stations during the pandemic, the economic fallout of COVID-19 has only exacerbated what was already an urgent need in homes, schools, and healthcare facilities all over the world. In fact, the COVID-19 pandemic may contribute to the first increase in global poverty in more than 20 years, and by 2021, an additional 150 million people could be pushed into extreme poverty.


One in four healthcare facilities around the world lacks basic water services, one in 10 has no sanitation service, and one in three lacks hand hygiene facilities at points of care. Data has shown that even where there are adequate WASH facilities, front-line healthcare workers have been 12 times more likely to test positive for COVID-19 compared with individuals in the general community. Insufficient access to water and sanitation not only risks millions of lives, especially those of women and children, but also affects many other development goals including gender equality, climate resilience, peace, and education. In fact, most – if not all – of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) depend in some way upon people having access to sufficient and safe water and sanitation. If we factor in additional stressors like climate change, drought and the impending financial crisis, the situation looks even worse. Lack of access to water and sanitation does not exist in isolation. It is part of a web of systemic challenges and inequalities, intensified by a lack of political will and chronic under- and misdirected investment in the sector. Even before the pandemic hit, there was a decrease in donor aid money, and it is now expected to drop further with growing domestic pressure for spending at home.

assistance to holistically address preventive measures to preserve health and reduce risks through the BMZ One Health strategy. Through its Cooperation Fund for Water and Sanitation, Spain has emphasized the need for the supply of drinking water and sanitation in vulnerable neighborhoods or rural areas, promoted hygiene and hand-washing measures, and adapted hygiene and hand-washing campaigns.

Germany and Spain have been two of the countries worst hit by COVID-19, yet have maintained their international aid support. Faced with the threat of COVID-19, Germany refocused its international development as

And it is not only the donor countries that are stepping up. In Zimbabwe, the government has committed $1.38m to improve access to water, sanitation and hygiene, and in Malawi, the country’s


country’s education minister committed part of a $6m funds earmarked for school reopenings to drilling boreholes and procuring soap. COVID-19 is not the first epidemic we faced and will not be the last. Resilience to future crises depends on actions taken now. So, how do we build towards a more resilient and equitable world in the wake of this crisis? Building forward from the pandemic is an opportunity to do things better, an opportunity we must seize without delay. Businesses and schools are reinventing the way they work and we believe that the water, sanitation and hygiene sector can also find new ways to build forward better. To be successful, we must strengthen political will at the highest levels in favour of water, sanitation and hygiene; improve multi-stakeholder engagement in countries; and reinforce good governance and finance. Good governance and the realisation of human rights are certainly the right things to do. But they are also catalytic to enable countries to attract more finance, to absorb it, and to invest in sustainable solutions. The human rights to water and sanitation will be achievable only if governments seize this moment to reduce health risks, strengthen health systems, and prevent future pandemics. We must act now to ensure we step up progress, despite – or even because of – COVID-19, in fully realising these fundamental human rights.


Partnership of the Month

Zina Craft Executive Director


About S.E.E. H.O.P.E. Social, educational, and economic wellbeing are integral to the success of all individuals in a strong society. However, too many communities lack the resources and support necessary to achieve these important goals. See Hope is an acronym for Social, Educational, Economic, Healing of People Everywhere. We are a U.S. based 501C3 organization since 2004 located in Atlanta, Georgia and Freetown Sierra Leone, where we are a registered NGO. Our core initiatives encompass strategies for poverty eradication which we accomplish by focusing on children and youth. We work primarily in lowincome communities in the U.S., Congo, Haiti and Sierra Leone. Knowing that children are the seeds for the future, our motto is “investing in children is an investment into our future and there can be no hope for a brighter tomorrow if we don’t invest in our children today”. Through the On DEC Youth Leadership Program, we support children who are living in dire conditions where crime, poverty and violence are pervasive. The program’s mission is to identify potential leaders, intervene on their behalf and invest in mentorship and training to increase their chances for success. The key strategies of the On DEC program is to empower youth leaders through service learning and access to education. These young leaders are at the core of the projects we support, and they play an integral role in helping to solve the problems afflicting their communities. In Africa and specifically Sierra Leone, water borne diseases are one of the leading causes of death, according to the World Health Organization. According to the Ministry of Health’s WASH Program Manager, Doris Bah, “95% of the water consumed is contaminated with Escherichia coli, a bacteria found in human and animal feces.” This is because a large majority of people in both urban and rural areas in Sierra Leone wash and get drinking water from contaminated streams. Due to the small number of households and facilities with access to clean water this has become more urgent with the spread of Covid-19, Ebola and Marbug, a virus is currently circulating in neighboring Guinea. We are currently supporting two communities that lack access to water and handwashing stations. Nack Force, an informal settlement community, which is located at the top a large hill in the urban western area and Simbaru Section, Tikonko community located in Bo, the southern region of the country. Since children and women are mostly responsible for fetching water, this often poses challenges for school attendance and tardiness. For instance, at Nack Force it is a 30-minute trek down and back up the mountain each morning. See Hope supports infrastructure initiatives at Nack Force, including roofing the school and building latrines as well as teacher and student financial support. We hope to broaden our efforts to include brining clean water up the mountain directly to the school and latrines as well as installing hand washing stations for students and staff.


See Hope supports infrastructure initiatives at Nack Force, including roofing the school and building latrines as well as teacher and student financial support. We hope to broaden our efforts to include bringing clean water up the mountain directly to the school and latrines as well as installing hand washing stations for students and staff. At Chuck Brammer school, our initiatives mostly encompass student financial support and particularly the cultural heritage program which helps create an avenue for cultural exchange with under-served communities in the U.S. Service learning and cultural exchange programs are proven strategies to support youth in urban areas where violence is pervasive. Participants benefit from improved selfesteem; increased tolerance for differences, which helps with conflict resolution and violence reduction. Deeper self-awareness through cultural immersion also helps to increase tolerance, empathy and foster changed behavior. We are hoping to expand our initiative to include service-learning trips from the U.S. to Chuck Brammer School in Sierra Leone.


Youth for Global Health & Social Justice


First Day of Virtual Class Thirty-five young people from Cameroon, Ghana, Haiti, Sierra Leone, and Zimbabwe were well prepared for the first day of virtual class on October 23. This session served as orientation covering three specific areas, student introductions, Y4GH study of water, and their expectations of the program. Y4GH serves as an international effort to amplify the voices of young people. Having a voice means that young people are able to speak up and contribute to conversations about decisions that affect them.

Virtual Class Schedule t

Saturday, October 23 Saturday, November 20 Saturday, December 18 Saturday, January 22 Saturday, February 19 March Dates TBD (World Water Day Celebration) April-June Specialized Training July 6-20 Youth Water Summit, Accra, Ghana *Only students registered in this program can attend



Join our first discussion Thursday, December 2 10 -11 a.m. (EST)

Our Topic "How do Water and Sanitation Solutions Affect the Global Economy?"

“The UN estimates it would cost an additional $30 billion to provide access to safe water to the entire planet. That’s a third of what the world spends in a year on bottled water.”

Ambassadors are the heartbeat of our program., they are appointed by the leadership of our partner organizations. These young adults are between the ages of 26 and 35. Ambassadors have an opportunity to serve as leaders in raising awareness and support for the human right to clean water and sanitation through their discussions with water sector professionals, public figures, educators, and more. It is with our deepest gratitude that these fine young people give of their time and talent representing the cause of water in their local and global community.



Photographers must be 14-18 years of age

Entries must be received not later than January 1, 2022

For complete guidelines and submission information, visit our website

1st Place $500 2nd Place $350 3rd Place $150


Photo Competition Guidelines Subject Matter Original photos depicting outdoor water scenes. Photos can include wildlife and plant life or pollution, but no humans. This contest is open to youth 14-18 years of age. Guidelines By submitting an entry, the contestant accepts and agrees to comply with these rules. The contest is open to students from any Y4GH partner country (Cameroon, Ghana, Nigeria, Senegal, Siera Leone, United States, and Zimbabwe. Entries must be submitted by email as an attachment in either JPG or PNG formats and must follow the theme for the competition. Photos must have been taken during the last 12 months. Any type of camera may be used and photos may be color or black & white. You may submit as many photographs as you like; however, a separate entry form and fee must accompany each photograph. Only one entry per contestant will be awarded a prize. Although slight computer-enhanced photos are allowed, such as cropping, trimming, adjusting lighting, and red-eye reduction, substantially altered photography, such as changing colors or applying design styles, or using computer graphics will disqualify an entry. Photographs should not contain “user placed text.” This includes such things as comments or titles. Modifying, enhancing, or altering a third party’s pre-existing work does not qualify as an entrant’s original creation. Entries will become the property of Y4GH and will not be returned. Winning photos may be used for promotional purposes at the discretion of Y4GH. There is a $25 non-refundable registration fee for each submission. Top 25 Only the top 25 photographs will make it to the final judging. The top 25 will be determined by online voting. Each photograph will be posted within 24 hours of receipt, photographs will be posted with the photographer's name and entry number. 25 top-voted photographs will advance to final judging. each vote will incur a $5 donation to Y4GH. Judging Photos will be judged on the following criteria: Creativity 50%, Photographic quality 50%. All judgments are final and interpretations of the guidelines are at Y4GH’s sole discretion. Awards 1st place: $500 2nd place:$350 3rd place: $150


Youth for Global Health & Social Justice


“There was a language specific to all things. The ability to learn another language in one arena, whether it was music, medicine, or finance, could be used to accelerate learning and other arenas, too.” ― Chris Gardner, The Pursuit of Happyness

In celebration of World Water Day 2022 Y4GH has created a Water Words Challenge Competition! A good vocabulary is essential for our young people as we advocate for clean water and sanitation. It allows you to communicate effectively, boosts your powers of persuasion, and helps you make a good impression. Guidelines for the competition will appear in the December issue of Water Ways. however, we have included in this issue a crossword puzzle to begin your vocabulary study. Word puzzles (answers will be in the following issue) with increasing difficulty will be included in each publication of Water Ways, along with other study resources.

ndry sbou n a r T

Typhoid Fever



Giar dia

Hepatitis A lentic waters

g in h c lea


impe rme able laye r percolation

e ductanc n o c ic if spec


Test your knowledge


Gila River Indian Community Celebrates Historic Groundwater Project

The Gila River Indian Community's riparian area above its managed aquifer project known as "Mar-5."

The Gila River Indian Community unveiled a historic groundwater infrastructure project. The tribe hopes it will provide for members when surface water becomes more scarce. The “Managed Aquifer Recharge” project, one of at least two planned for the reservation, has a canal system and an open basin where water will seep down into the aquifer. Water then pumped from the aquifer will irrigate crops. The basin also supports a riparian habitat in the Gila River pathway. The birds and plants are coming back after upstream users diverted the tribe’s water after the Civil War. Tribal member Kandi Howard said it’s nice to not have to leave the reservation to enjoy nature like this. “And to [have our] water rights back,” she said, referring to the historic 2004 Arizona Water Settlement. Of the riparian area, she said, “it’s coming along. And I didn’t think our kids would be able to see it, but they are. Like, gradually.” The governor of the Gila River Indian Community, Stephen Roe Lewis, said the pace of building increased once Drought Contingency Plan talks started in 2016.


A Canal on gila River Indian Reservation

“It became clear that drought was a reality for all of us,” he told a crowd of Community members, water leaders and politicians. “And that the community needed to accelerate its reduction of CAP water deliveries and increase its reliance on groundwater supplies.” The tribe said the project allows it to take less Central Arizona Project (CAP) water and make agreements to help prop up Lake Mead. The GRIC played an important role in Arizona’s intrastate agreement that helped the state get on board with a Colorado River basin-wide DCP plan. It also signed a separate agreement with the groundwater replenishment arm of the Central Arizona Project, providing more water for development in Central Arizona.


The Central Arizona Project is a massive infrastructural project that conveys water from the Colorado River to central and southern Arizona, and is central to many of the innovative partnerships and exchanges that the Gila River Indian Community has set up. Courtesy of the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation text

Pipeline control gates


Creating a balance of water that's taken from aquifers and water that replenishes aquifers is an important aspect of making sure water will be available when it’s needed. Image from “Getting down to facts: A Visual Guide to Water in the Pinal Active Management Area,” courtesy of Ashley Hullinger and the University of Arizona Water Resources Research Center


Dear Water For millions of children around the world, not having easy access to clean water robs them of time, energy, health, and opportunity. It means so much to these schoolgirls in Kenya that they wrote a poem — “Dear Water” — to share how life-changing it is:

Dear water, It was hard to get to you. Waking up at dawn Buckets on our heads Donkeys loaded with jerrycans. Miles we walked In the scorching heat To look for you. Dear water, At last you came. Sweet water Our backs are rested The miles are no more Diseases are gone. For you are closer to us. Dear water, You are such a blessing.


Coming in December! Partner Organization of the Month

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