This September 4 2010, UNITAR became the newest UN institution to become a member of UN Water during the coordinating platform’s thirteenth meeting.  Joining the platform will provide UNITAR with the opportunity to coordinate its capacity development, research and training activities on water and sanitation with other UN institutions as well as add value to the platform in a number of ways.

Given UNITAR’s expertise in knowledge management and capacity building it will especially collaborate with two of the UN Water’s programmes the UN Water Decade Programme on Capacity Development (UNW-DPC) and the UN-Water Decade Programme on Advocacy and Communication (UNW-DPAC), as well as other task forces and thematic working groups.

UN-Water is an inter-agency platform formally established in 2003 by the United Nations High Level Committee on Programmes to strengthen coordination and coherence among UN entities dealing with issues related to all aspects of freshwater and sanitation. The platform has 28 members from the UN System and external partners representing various organizations and civil society.

Possible ideas for UNITAR’s contributions to UN Water developed during the meeting were linkages with UNOSAT and satellite mapping of water resources in trans-boundary areas, delivering coordinated water and sanitation trainings through UNITAR’s CIFAL regional training centre network, developing further e-learning courses coordinating UN training resources for online learning opportunities, and assisting with UN Water’s knowledge sharing and awareness raising campaigns.

After submitting a membership application earlier in 2010, UNITAR was pleased to officially become a member of UN Water and hopes to now start contributing to the platform’s objective of promoting coherence and coordination across the UN system on water and sanitation for the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals.

For more information on UN Water see: www.unwater.org.