Freshwater Action Network
– grassroots influencing on water and sanitation

We are not alone South Asia!

London, 22 March: This morning during the breakfast, Lajana Manandhar, FAN governing council member, drew my attention to TV news. It was about the public grievances in the public transport in London as they suffer space in the public transport due to overcrowding. We laughed watching it.

I was in London for the Global Communications workshop with the FAN. Coincidently it was the World Water Day.  Like every year, on the world water day many organizations observed public events but this year in London I had experienced completely different. I attended WaterAid and Tearfund's Walk for Water event outside Parliament in Westminster.

It is an extremely innovative and low-cost approach of lobbying MPs. I met Mathew Orme, a young supporter coming from 3 miles away from London who was studying at grade 9 at the event outside the parliament. "I have no water supply problem and sanitation utility is perfect, but how could I see the people in the developing countries suffer from the inadequate watsan services?", said Orme. He believes that influencing MPs can channel funds to the charities that are helping the poor people.

Another supporter, Cai Green, studying at grade 8 was taking interviews of the people that joined the World Walk for Water in London. He raises funds in his school to support the disadvantaged people. He was producing news of the event as a part of his Young Journalist Academy activities at the school. I was really touched by their commitments.
Are these people crazy? Not at all.

Anas Sarwar, the Member of Parliament of Glasgow Central walked with a jerry can full of water in the event organized for Walk for Water. He expressed that he is a humanitarian, hence, came to participate in the event jointly organized by EWP, WaterAid, FAN and Tearfund in London.

Prakash outside houses of Parliament

"I want to see equality, and share the luxury that I have with the people living in the slums of Mumbai. See I am a part of the global village and I have an obligation to do it. I think UK can influence the other countries besides providing a major development funding. It's a mere tragedy that people die of safe water access and adequate sanitation facilities," told Anas.

This campaign brings awareness to the policy makers and opens up our eyes to make us accountable, he added.

While the campaigners urged the world water crisis at the Westminster, Fiono Bruce, Member of Parliament at the House of Parliament was nostalgic while sharing her own experiences during her childhood. She still remembers the people carrying water on their backs. Her city was the last to get the piped water supply then. She has experienced the changes that went through the hard time and she ascertained that it should not happen to any more in this earth. She was suggesting the campaigners to convenience more MPs sign Early Day Motion (EDM) 1632. Connect the churches in the campaign and talk to the local press for the public pressure.

Margaret was telling me that WaterAid brings the money collected from the individuals to support the dire situation in the developing world. She introduced me to Pat Spry who is a committed supporter of the WaterAid for the past 26 years. She proudly announced that she has come there to talk to her MP and lobby them about the issues. “I want to live in peace and I do not want to see my brothers and sisters dying. I am quite assured that this event will be helpful influencing our government to support the cause”, she added.

It is a mega campaign that FAN through its members around the globe is organizing World Walk for Water urging the governments to recognizing the water crisis for what it is – a crisis of governance, weak politics and poor management rather than one of scarcity.

I am now in firm belief that the change that the people in the north want to see is possible not materialistically but with their heart and soul. Salute to FAN linking with the globe and making me feel that I am not alone.

Here is a video of Pat Spry's response to my question - why do you care so passionately about these issues that affect people you don't know thousands of miles away? Also, my personal reaction below that.

hello Prakash dai... nice to

hello Prakash dai... nice to see your blog... is that water or petrol in blue jar..hahaha...BTW when are you returning back?

Long live the support around the Globe

Water is scarce everywhere in the world. It's all policy and managment of water which provide their citizen abundant of it. Nepal has ample of water more than enough for all of us, yet it's like the clouds in the sky, hard to reach. Glad to see the support from the people of England. Hopefully Nepalese Government cherish it to bring the dreams of Nepalese come true.

Prakash, hope you can bring the water tank in your hand, full of water to fill the Bagmati and tap of all the Nepalese. Thanks and Good Luck!

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