On 8 December, UNESCO Jakarta in collaboration with the World Water Council and youth water organizations across Asia and the Pacific, led an online satellite event for the 9th World Water Forum to be held in Dakar, Senegal in 2022. Six youth leaders shared their best management practices and youth-led activities to solve water-related problems in their respective countries and sub regions.
Before the online event, UNESCO conducted an online survey to the participants with a total of 82 responses. According to the survey results, zero hunger (SDG 2), good health and well-being (SDG 3), and clean water and sanitation (SDG 6) are the three main Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) to achieve to ensure water security and sanitation in Asia and the Pacific. The survey also identified achieving universal and equitable access to safe drinking water as the most important target of SDG 6.
The event began with an interactive exercise on "Youth as agents of change to achieve the SDGs", highlighting that education innovation for and by youth are the key approaches in achieving the SDGs.
The main session of the event featured an interactive exchange between youth from Senegal, India, Republic of Korea, Kyrgyzstan, Malaysia, and the Federated States of Micronesia, moderated by a youth water expert from Indonesia. The discussion highlighted that social media could be a powerful tool to involve youth to solve water and sanitation challenges. In addition, big data analytics has the potential to yield valuable information to achieve targets on SDG 6.
The event will be followed by a continuing youth dialogue across Asia and the Pacific leading to the 2022 World Water Forum, ensuring that young people from the region will have a clear and bold voice at this global event.