Tuesday, 13 March 2012

PRESS RELEASE – 12 March 2012

Civil Society groups from across the world unite to urge governments to implement the human right to water and sanitation

Launch of the Butterfly Effect messages at the 6th World Water Forum followed by walk for water to demand action to address the world’s largest crisis.

Marseilles – Leading international and national civil society organisations urge government delegations and other actors present at 6th World Water Forum to implement the human right to water and sanitation for all people.

Some 900 million people have no access to safe drinking water, and 2.6 billion lack basic sanitation. Today, the first day of 6th World Water Forum, the Butterfly Effect, a coalition of international NGOs, which advocates effective local solutions that have a sustainable impact on water and sanitation, launched their messages.

Made up of over 90 civil society organisations, NGOs, networks and womens’ organisations, the Butterfly Effect is an open movement that’s growing fast. Their solutions are based on human rights principles and communities’ experience, and relate to policies, projects, information campaigns and empowering stakeholders. Crucially, these solutions are local, sustainable, adaptable, innovative, equitable, accountable and people-orientated.
They consulted with NGOs for over a year to bring their experience and expertise together in a common set of messages for the Forum.  Diverse and inspiring representatives from all over the world brought the messages to life at the press conference by sharing their stories from the ground reality to demonstrate how civil society holds constructive solutions on how to tackle key challenges related to water and sanitation. 

“We believe that good governance of water and sanitation will only be brought about through a human rights based approach which requires adequate investment in informed and effective civil society participation” says Maggie White from the International Secretariat for Water, who introduced the messages.

“We greatly welcomed the 2010 UN resolutions recognizing the human right to safe drinking water and sanitation as legally binding” explains Doreen Wandera of UWASNET, a network of NGOS working on water and sanitation in Uganda, “We now urge all actors to support national governments to implement this right for all people and to recognise and effectively support local knowledge and community management as important contributions to implement this right.”

Directly after the conference, the group staged a mass walk around the conference to raise awareness of the all the people around the world who still walk for miles every day to access safe water.
Butterfly Effect members are involved in formal and informal sessions throughout the Forum where they will be sharing their experiences and pushing their messages. Among the calls from the Butterfly Effect are to integrate equity, participation and accountability dimensions of a human rights-based approach in water governance, increase access to water and sustainable sanitation services to fulfil the human rights criteria and to recognise the value of local knowledge and ensure that local voices are taken into account in policies and their implementation at all levels. 

Printed copies of the Butterfly Effect messages in English, French and Spanish and more information about all of the sessions in which members are participating, ongoing updates, photographs and videos can be found here: http://butterflyeffectwwf.blogspot.com

Interviews with experienced spokespeople from all over the world available on requestcontactpress.butterflyeffect@gmail.com, Muriel Benarroche, +33 (0) 6 12 42 61 93 , Paul Garwood paul.garwood@gci.ch , mobile; +41797760454

Butterfly Effect official sessions:

Session 1: Solutions from civil society: Inspiring change through a human rights based approach; BE members will encourage discussion on how human rights standards and principles are contributing to equitable and sustainable solutions on the ground. Tuesday, 13 March, 11-13 pm, Venue: PC 8 - Callelongue, Palais des Congrès

Session 2: Occupy the 6th World Water Forum: Building inclusive human rights-based water and sanitation governance and management from the bottom-up!
Thursday, 15 March, 11-13 pm, Venue: PC 8 - Callelongue, Palais des Congrès

1 comment:

  1. All of these are just amazing! I love this blog. Butterflies are so pretty.