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September 10, 2019

Water scarcity: Getting water into everyone’s hands

A quarter of humanity is at risk of running out of water. What can we do to fix this? Join us as we discuss the problem and find some real solutions to global water scarcity.

Participants in this video

Obakeng Leseyane

Obakeng Leseyane

South African education advocate and youth activist

Yana Abu Taleb

Yana Abu Taleb

Jordanian director of EcoPeace Middle East

Georgie Badiel

Georgie Badiel

Burkinabé model, author and activist

Ghida Fakhry

Ghida Fakhry

Doha Debates Moderator

Govinda Clayton

Govinda Clayton

Doha Debates Connector, Senior Researcher in Peace Processes at ETH Zurich

Nelufar Hedayat

Nelufar Hedayat

Doha Debates correspondent & host of Course Correction and #DearWorldLive

DeepDive 270 225

Deep Dive

Resources for educators

Our educational programs and resources draw upon the Majlis, the specific cultural tradition of Arab problem-solving venues, and engage in communal reasoning and productive dialogue. Learn how to have better conversations about water scarcity with our customizable lesson plans.

A thank you to the students in Cape Town

To the Cape Town students who attended our live debate in Cape Town, South Africa: Thank you. At our debate, we addressed crucial questions about the future of water scarcity and the solutions we need to propose to bring an end to the crisis. Students from the University of Western Cape, Stellenbosch University and Rosendaal Secondary School and the University of Cape Town asked engaging questions that deepened our conversation on the complexities of water scarcity. The students’ insights drove our debate and helped us all to better understand the urgency of the crisis and the actions we can take as individuals.

Student participants asked tough questions ranging from how we fund philanthropic efforts to how to work toward international peace. Minisi Themba Komalo from Stellenbosch University asked one of our speakers, Georgie Badiel, about how to address water scarcity as a holistic problem, not one that just affects some members of society. Komalo said, “We understand that there’s a fundamental problem here on the ground which is the water crisis. But this is not just a crisis. This has other elements or needs being justice, inequality and corruption and power.”

Felicia Maloleke from the University of Western Cape also shared a question with Badiel. She asked, “On the issue of funding, how do you go on deciding who you are going to get money from and are they organizations?” Roderique Gabrielle from the University of Cape Town directed his question about the Israel-Palestine conflict to Yana Abu Taleb, another one of our speakers. He wondered, “One of Doha Debates’ key principles is working across differences, so how do you think we can convince Israelis and Palestinians, for example, to even agree or listen or to meet with one another? What are the pragmatic ways that we can get this done?

Monique, a student at Rosendaal Secondary School, asked our speaker Obakeng Leseyane a question that garnered applause: “What do we as young people exactly do to make a change? How do we demand social justice?” Leseyane responded that it is our responsibility as citizens to keep our governments accountable, saying, “If we sit back and do absolutely nothing for government, business continues as usual.” These pressing questions from students helped drive our debate on water scarcity and gave light to the complexity of this issue.

What do we as young people exactly do to make a change? How do we demand social justice?”

Monique, Rosendaal Secondary School

Students across the globe participated in our water scarcity debate by tuning in and tweeting #DearWorld to share their thoughts. A class in Pennsylvania in the US even tuned in to learn more about water scarcity!

Students from in and around Cape Town were inspired by the perspectives of our speakers on the issue of global water scarcity and water as a human right. Their engaging and thoughtful questions were an invaluable contribution to our debate. So, to the students of Cape Town: We thank you for your meaningful participation, which helps guide us closer to ending water scarcity.

Student participants in the water scarcity debate

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