Sarum College to host conference on faith and water

families draw water from street tank in Nairobi

families draw water from street tank in Nairobi

A conference on water, sanitation, children and faith will take place in Salisbury’s Sarum College from 5-7 July. Religious leaders from seven faiths will be represented: Buddhists, Catholics, Hindus, Jews, Muslims, Protestants and Zoroastrians, from 15 countries.

Theologians and top water experts from UNICEF, UNDP, the World Bank, DFiD and the Dutch Government’s development organisation, DGIS will also be taking part. The talks and will include  an exhibition of the latest water filtering technology.

Henk Holtstag will be there to talk about Smart Techs – simple technological solutions - including the ceramic Filtron Filter (made by Potters for Peace, and eliminating bacteria and turbidity), rope pumps (there are 80,000 of them transforming lives of three million people), and Tippy Taps for washing hands in schools (costing less than £3/unit).

There will be a meditation in the Lady Chapel of Salisbury Cathedral on Monday 6  July at 6.30 to 7.30 with prayers from seven traditions about our place in nature and our relationship with water.

One aim of the conference is to produce a guide to help faiths and secular groups work together to protect water resources and the environment, to preserve hygiene and promote the safe management of water and waste, specifically in schools.

The event is co-hosted by the Alliance of Religions and Conservation (ARC), with the Dutch Ecological Management Foundation (EMF) and the International Water and Sanitation Centre (IRC).

ARC is a secular organisation which began as a sister body to WWF, and works to broker partnerships with the faiths on conservation matters. EMF is an ecological body with a particular focus on water. IRC specifically works on water, sanitation and hygiene and as a centre brings 40 years of experience to the conference.

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