World Water Day was first decreed by the UN in 1992, and the first World Water Day was celebrated in 1993.
Since then, each March 22, the world celebrates World Water Day with a related theme. This year, the theme is Water & Jobs. Indeed, if everyone knows that water is life, and that sustainable development is linked to the availability of water, today it is the connection between water and jobs that is highlighted.
Nearly half of the world’s workers (1.5 billion) work in water-related sectors, and all jobs on earth are connected to water and its safe delivery. The celebration today also highlights the unpaid and un-recognized work of women who spend hours each day fetching water for their families in places where there is no available water distribution system. An activity, which, alternatively prevents those women from going to school, acquiring training, or engaging in paid activity on behalf of their families and for economic growth. Women and children thus remain a “disproportionately large fraction’ of the bottom billion living on less than $1.25/day. [UN-Water-Stats]
Consequently, the call for more safe water and better management of its distribution is also a call for better jobs, better health, sustainable development, and better lives.