LA-WETnet: Raising awareness on the value of water

On 22 March LA-WETnet participated in a World Water Day event jointly organised by Nestlé and the UNESCO Chair, Water and Education for Sustainable Development, took place at the Faculty of Engineering and Water Sciences of the National University of the Littoral (FICH UNL Santa Fe, Argentina).

The event  focused on the 2021 theme of the World Water Day “Let’s value water”. Established by the United Nations, celebrating this day is based on the idea that taking care of water is a responsibility and a task for everyone and that everyone can act and have individual responsibility towards water.

Lic. Pablo Manrique, Regional Manager of Safety, Hygiene and Environment of the Silver Region of Nestlé (Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay), highlighted measures carried out by the company to care for water and the environment, mainly through the recycling of plastic packaging.

Marta Paris and Mario Schreider, coordinators of LA-WETnet, hosted an online game with questions and answers on the substantive concepts related to development and implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), with particular emphasis on SDG 6, which promotes universal access to clean water and sanitation.

Schreider and Paris made a presentation of the SDGs, where they originate from, the impact of SDG 6 and the “value of water”, relating back to the slogan for World Water Day 2021. They also referred to the implementation of the SDGs at the national, sub-national, and municipal level, as well as in the private sector; and lastly Nestlé’s contributions to achieving the SDGs and the importance of building partnerships.

Natalia Bas, coordinator of the Distance Education Area of ​​the FICH UNL, presented La Ola, an alternative reality game created jointly with the UNESCO Chair, Water and Education for Sustainable Development, with the aim of raising awareness about the importance of the SDGs. During the game, players are invited to join the «La Ola Movement”. To be able to join, they will have to overcome different stages where they will be asked to put into play certain knowledge related to the subject in an entertaining and challenging way.

Just over 200 people from Argentina, Uruguay and Paraguay participated in the Nestle´s online event including residents of the areas where the factories are located, community leaders, teachers and other members of the educational community, municipal authorities and organizations in general.

Marta Paris and Mario Schreider concluded that “the process of design, implementation and development of these two meetings on Water Management and the Sustainable Development Goals were an important experience of collaboration between a private company such as Nestle and an institution of the academic sector such as the UNESCO Water and Education Chair for Sustainable Development, constituting a genuine contribution on the dialogue between science and the private sector ”.

Pablo Manrique affirmed in his concluding remarks that “Caring for water is an essential commitment for Nestle and every World Water Day we celebrate this date with the communities of the factories where we are present. This year, in the context of the pandemic, the meeting was virtual with our Stakeholders and we thank the UNESCO Water and Education Chair for accompanying us to reflect on water as a shared and vital challenge for the fulfillment of the Sustainable Development Goals “.

On March 30, Nestle together with the UNESCO Chair carried out virtually the same awareness event on the “care of water”, targeting on this occasion the employees of the 11 factories that the company has in the aforementioned countries. LA-WETnet coordinators also participated in this event, developing the same activities.