The ReNOKA movement in conjunction with the Wetskills Foundation presented an opportunity for young professionals with a passion for water and natural resources management to enhance their knowledge at the Wetskills Water Challenge 2023 edition in Lesotho between the 30th September to the 12th October through the support of the European Union Delegation in Lesotho.
The Wetskills Water Challenge is an intensive two-week programme for young professionals from all over the world. As part of the programme, they are grouped into multinational and multidisciplinary teams where they work together to develop innovative and out-of-the-box solutions to some of the pressing real-life water challenges submitted by government institutions, companies, and organizations.
During the Wetskills Lesotho 2023 event, 23 young professionals came together to exchange some innovative ideas on the topics of water and natural resources management. They developed innovative ideas around the following themes:
- Striking the balance between sustainable implementation of NRM measures and livelihoods
- Promoting water use efficiency through sustainable implementation of water reuse and recycling within SADC
- An integrated framework for transboundary water cooperation between Lesotho and South Africa
- Threat of sustainability of water resources due to unsustainable management of solid waste and leachate seepage
- Giving the roots to the 2018 soil erosion blankets
This served as an excellent opportunity for young Basotho professionals to enhance their knowledge through interaction with their international peers who also took part in the challenge.
Phomolo Khonthu, the Catchment Manager under ReNOKA, who is also an alumni of Wetskills Challenge says the technological innovation is crucial to fulfilling needs of the constantly changing modern world, and the water sector is no exception.
“Nowadays, young water professionals strive to find solutions to the challenges the world is facing, and contribute in attempts to achieve a water-wise world”, said Khonthu.
From the 23 participants at this year’s challenge in Lesotho, 10 of them were students studying water related courses at the National University of Lesotho (NUL) and Lerotholi Polytechnic and they were supported by ReNOKA.
Reflecting on his incredible experience with Wetskills-Lesotho 2023, where together with his teammates were crowned 2023 champions for their pitch on Water footprint compensations, upscaling erosion blankets, Japane Nalete said “as someone passionate about water management and its vital role in sustainability, I highly recommend this program to anyone interested in making a difference in the water sector. It’s a fantastic opportunity for knowledge sharing and co-creation”.
Other activities that the participants were engaged in included a side visit to Katse Dam in the Upper Senqu Catchment where they were enriched with the knowledge on the Lesotho catchments while also diving into in-depth expert consultations.
ReNOKA (‘we are a river’) is a national programme and citizen movement for the restoration of land and water in Lesotho and the Orange-Senqu basin. Support for ReNOKA is provided through a partnership between the Government of Lesotho, the European Union and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). The EU and BMZ contributions are implemented through a technical assistance project “Support to Integrated Catchment Management in Lesotho” by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH.
For more information
Visit the ReNOKA website at www.renoka.org
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National ICM Coordinator, ICM Coordination Unit
GIZ Programme Manager, Support to Integrated Catchment Management (ICM) in Lesotho
‘This publication was produced with the financial support of the European Union and the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). Its contents are the sole responsibility of the Integrated Catchment Management unit and do not necessarily reflect the views of the European Union or the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ)’