What Is World Water Day?

FINCA customer Jane Nakintu drinks a glass of clean water

World Water Day is celebrated every year on March 22 to highlight the importance of fresh water. In 2015, the world committed to Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 6 as part of the 2030 Agenda: the promise that everyone around the world would have sustainably managed water and sanitation by 2030. Right now, however, the world is not on track to meet this goal. This lack of action towards clean water access causes delays in progress towards all major global issues. The United Nations urges us to be vigilant in our efforts moving forward, so we can meet the designated 2030 goal.

In addition to World Water Day, the UN has also initiated a multitude of other programs and initiatives to address SDG 6. One such initiative is the Be the Change campaign, which encourages people to act in their own lives to change the way they use, consume, and manage water. The UN has also instated The Water Action Agenda, a collection of voluntary commitments from governments, companies members of the public, and more designed to deliver rapid progress, specifically towards SDG 6.

How FINCA Is Getting Involved

Despite recognizing the importance of World Water Day, increasing access to clean water and sanitation stretches far beyond a single day. FINCA and our partners work every day to directly address SDG 6. One partner we work with to expand access to clean water is Jibu. Founded in 2014, Jibu delivers affordable drinking water to low-income communities in numerous countries across Africa. Built on a franchise model, the organization increases local business ownership and has created thousands of jobs opportunities. And because Jibus’s bottles are reusable, customers pay a one-time bottle deposit. After that, they pay only for the water they drink.

To date, Jibu’s network includes many franchises, which supply water to more than 4,000 retail locations. From an environmental perspective, Jibu’s model reduces the prevalence of home boiling and associated carbon emissions and health implications of indoor smoke. And from a personal perspective, Jibu is changing the lives of hundreds of thousands of people who now have access to clean water. Overall, Jibu provides a service that is sustainable for the business and the consumer. However, companies like Jibu are merely a small part of achieving SDG 6 by 2030.

Alex Bwire of Jibu loads his delivery vehicle with with clean, fresh water for his customers.
Alex Bwire of Jibu loads his delivery vehicle with with clean, fresh water for his customers.

How You Can Help on World Water Day and Every Day:

  1. Be mindful of your water usage to reduce your environmental footprint
  2. Donate to FINCA International or a water-focused cause to further access efforts
  3. Learn more about global access to clean water and sanitation by visiting the World Water Day website or other related sources
  4. Educate others by raising awareness on social media or engaging with your friends and family about this pressing issue