The RWSN was present at the IRC All Systems Connect Symposium 2023

IRC All Systems Connect Symposium 2023

Between 2-4 May 2023, The Hague became a hub of knowledge sharing, collaboration, and transformative discussions as more than 700 changemakers and systems leaders gathered for the highly anticipated All Systems Connect International Symposium 2023. The symposium brought together experts from water, sanitation and hygiene (WASH), health, climate, economic development, and social justice sectors. With 10 ministerial level delegations in attendance, including representatives from Ethiopia, Guatemala, Ghana, Honduras, Indonesia, Liberia, Malawi, Nepal, Rwanda, and Uganda, the symposium aimed to foster dialogue and action across sectors and silos to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals by 2030. 

Meleesa Naughton, from RWSN Secretariat at a session titled “Young People, Jobs and lifelong learning for WASH professionals” at All Systems Connect Symposium 2023 (RWSN, 2023)

RWSN’s participation at the All Systems Connect Symposium 2023 

 The Rural Water Supply Network (RWSN) Secretariat, along with several theme leaders, actively participated in the All Systems Connect Symposium 2023. They organized and co-convened various sessions that addressed critical issues in the water and sanitation sector: 

  1. Broadening the definition of “resilience”: approaches to WASH and climate systems strengthening: This session, held on Tuesday, 2 May, focused on exploring innovative approaches to strengthen water, sanitation, and hygiene systems in the face of climate change. Discussions revolved around enhancing resilience and adapting to the evolving challenges posed by climate-related impacts. 
  2. Decolonising the WASH narrative to localise/promote systems change: In two parts, this session aimed to disrupt the single-story narrative of WASH and promote systems change.  
  3. Young people, jobs, and lifelong learning for WASH professionals: Recognizing the role of youth in shaping the future of the WASH sector, this session explored strategies to engage young people, foster job opportunities, and promote lifelong learning. It emphasized the need to diversify the water workforce with a focus on young professionals and women and build more coherent professional development pathways in the sector. 
  4. Private operators of rural water supplies: drivers, experiences, and supporting systems: This session shed light on the vital role of private operators in delivering reliable and sustainable rural water supplies.  
  5. Small but not forgotten: a sneak preview of WHO’s new guidelines for small drinking-water supplies: This session offered a glimpse into the forthcoming guidelines by the World Health Organization (WHO). It aimed to raise awareness about the unique challenges faced by small-scale water supply systems (and through a panel discussion explore strategies and recommendations to improve support to small water supplies. 
  6. Ideas market for your WASH systems backpack: in an interactive session of sharing experiences of systems strengthening, RWSN shared tricks and tips for getting the most from networking at events and conferences like this one. 
  7. Women’s Lunch Mingle: Empowering Women in Water. In partnership with the Community of Women in Water, Water for People and Susana, RWSN co-organized the Women’s Lunch Mingle, a dedicated session aimed at empowering women professionals in the water and sanitation sector. Held on Thursday, 4 May, this event provided a platform for informal networking and knowledge exchange among female attendees.  

Women’s Lunch Mingle session at All Systems Connect Symposium 2023  (RWSN, 2023)

You can browse the presentations shared at All Systems Connect here.

Highlights on rural water supply include: 

RWSN Secreatariat with Theme Leaders at All Systems Connect Symposium 2023 (RWSN, 2023)