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History of the WWO in the context of the United Nations, the Millennium Development Goals and Water

“Safe drinking water and basic sanitation are intrinsic to human survival, well-being and dignity. Without a serious advance in implementing the water and sanitation agenda, there is little prospect of achieving development for all.” - United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon

In recognition of the fact that over one-sixth of the world’s population- 1.2 billion people - struggle every day to survive with limited or no access to safe drinking water, multiple United Nations initiatives to address this critical issue have been devised over the past three decades. The World Water Organization (WWO) was founded to help facilitate implementation of these initiatives, including the International Drinking Water Supply and Sanitation Decade (1985), the United Nations Millennium Development Goals (2000), and the International Decade for Action “Water for Life” (2003), all of which collectively aim to:

1. To ensure clean water supply for the world’s vulnerable populations;
2. To tackle root causes of clean water deficiency (e.g. global warming, desertification, war, corruption); and
3. To strengthen the means of response to humanitarian issues provoked by waterless and/or unsanitary conditions (e.g. child mortality, disease, compromised education, mass migration)

This list was presented to all heads of states and the UN Secretary General Kofi Annan in April, 2000. It called for all UN member states to officially support and actively work toward advancing the objectives it spelled out.

At the United Nations Millennium Development Summit in September of that year, all heads of states created and unanimously agreed upon a list of goals, which adhered to and elaborated upon the ones presented by the Millennium NGO Forum. These goals become known as the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).

The eight goals are as follows:
1. Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
2. Achieve universal primary education
3. Promote gender equality and empower women
4. Reduce childhood mortality
5. Improve maternal health
6. Combat HIV/AIDS, malaria and other diseases
7. Ensure environmental sustainability
8. Develop a global partnership for development

For more information on the MDGs, please visit the website at http://www.un.org/millenniumgoals/

Of the many concerns voiced during these international discussions, access to clean water came to the fore as a particularly pressing issue for people worldwide. Water was identified as an underlying factor essential to the successful achievement of what would eventually become the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). By the time the goals had been shaped into their final treaty, water was revealed as critical to the successful achievement of all goals.

With this consensus of all stakeholders and urgent cries from the world’s water deprived millions, including children and women, the concerned citizens of the world came together under the banner of The World Water Organization (WWO) to help carry out this historical mandate of delivering safe drinking water to the world’s thirsty population.




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