CIFAL Durban host wins 2011 “Water for Life” Best Practices Award on World Water Day

22 March 2011 - The ‘Las Pinas-Zapote River System Rehabilitation Programme’, Philippines, and the project ‘A Participatory and Learning Based Approach to Raising Awareness on Water and Sanitation’, Durban, eThekwini Municipality, South Africa, have been awarded with the ‘Water for Life’ Best Practices Award during a ceremony that has taken place in Zaragoza, Spain, on World Water Day. 

Earlier this year, via UN Water, UNITAR sent the call for the award to its network of training centres for local governments, The CIFAL Network (http://www.unitar.org/ldp/cifal-network/cifal-centres). Housed by the Municipality of Durban, CIFAL Durban sent the call out to various partners in its municipal partners hoping to highlight Durban's successful experiences and best practices in integrated water resources management or other water and sanitation related topics.
 
The ‘Water for Life’ Best Practices Award recognizes outstanding practices that can ensure the long-term sustainable management of water resources and contribute to the achievement of internationally agreed goals and targets. The award showcases the most successful initiatives and practices in two categories.
 
The Secretariat received 39  applications for category 1 ‘Best water management practices’, and 35 applications for category 2 ‘Best participatory, communication, awareness-raising and education practices’. Geographical distribution of applications is as follows: Africa 15%, Asia 21%, Europe 25%, Latin America and the Caribbean 35%, Northern America 4%. Projects submitted show the wide variety of approaches and the richness and creativity of different actors when coping with issues and challenges related to water and sanitation.
 
All applications were reviewed and assessed by an international Technical Advisory Committee (TAC). This Committee forwarded its final evaluation to an international Jury who has made the final selection of candidates.
 
The 2011 edition of the Prize was finally awarded to:
 
- The project ‘A Participatory and Learning Based Approach to Raising Awareness on Water and Sanitation’, Durban, eThekwini Municipality, South Africa, in Category 2, for its innovative approach to communication and awareness raising in poor areas and its outstanding contribution to addressing key challenges related to water and sanitation in an urban area.
 
- ‘Las Pinas-Zapote River System Rehabilitaion Programme’, from Philippines, in Category 1, for its outstanding contribution towards improving the living environment and its demonstrable and tangible impact on improving people’s quality of life within a metropolitan river basin; 
 
Additional information on the winning best practices and a video showing short-listed candidates is available on the Water for Life Decade website: http://www.un.org/waterforlifedecade/