Cityzens Giving Young Leaders from ten Xylem Water Heroes Academy projects around the world have led a series of events and festivals in their local communities to mark World Water Day.
Held on March 22 every year since 1993, World Water Day celebrates water and raises awareness of the 2 billion people living without access to safe water.
Young Leaders in São Paulo, Mexico City, Buenos Aires, New York City, Cape Town, Cape Coast, Mumbai, Kuala Lumpur, Melbourne and Shanghai developed and led football and water education activities, collectively engaging more than 2,000 young people in a coordinated global week of action.
Activities in all cities included football-based water education sessions developed by the Young Leaders to educate young people on water challenges and solutions, ranging from the importance of good sanitation and hygiene to tackling water pollution, improving water conservation and building flood-resilient communities.
In Kuala Lumpur, young leaders hosted a series of activities engaging young people from age 3 to 17, including innovation challenges, a field trip to Xylem’s offices, a river clean-up and a football festival.
In Cape Coast, Ghana, the young leaders held a football festival at the Football for Hope Centre, which included dedicated handwashing education sessions at the recently installed Aqua Tower and group work to build action plans on water conservation.
Speaking about the message of World Water Day, Emmanuella, a Young Leader in Cape Coast, said: “Be the change agent and inspire others! Water is life and every drop of it counts, so save as much as possible and whenever you can, because water affects us all.”
Over in New York City, Young Leaders from City in the Community joined Earth Echo International’s World Water Day event, delivering football and WASH education to more than 60 young attendees, as well as taking part in a beach clean-up.
Xylem employees dedicated their time to join and support several of the events across the world, as part of a wider mentorship partnership between local Xylem offices and the projects.
Emma Housman – Manager, Community & Social Impact at Xylem – said: “Every year, World Water Day serves as an important reminder of the critical water challenges facing communities around the world. It also highlights the enormous opportunity we have to make a difference.
“The young leaders who are tackling water issues in their communities through the Water Heroes Academy are an impressive example of what can be achieved through greater awareness and education.
“Their passion has the potential to turn the tide on one of the biggest challenges of our time – ensuring access to clean water and sanitation for all.”
Launched in March 2021, Xylem Water Heroes Academy is a unique collaboration between Xylem and Cityzens Giving, empowering young leaders in 10 cities around the world to solve local water challenges using the power of football.