During National Water Week (16-22 March), an exciting new event, The Watershed Festival, hopes to restore the public’s appreciation of clean and accessible drinking water, reminding them of its worth, scarcity and the absence of a substitute.
Thanks to the team at the Watershed Project, a Cape Town based NPO, and main sponsor, Woolworths, the festival will present a series of local and internationally acclaimed films documenting water in all its beautiful forms. Other events taking place will see families and water sport enthusiasts enjoying Princess Vlei, one of Cape Town’s most historic vleis, for a day of water fun. The Friends of the Liesbeek public awareness group are hosting a family walk along its banks to share the beauty of this urban stream that runs from Table Mountain above Kirstenbosch to the Atlantic Ocean.
The Watershed Festival hopes to create increased awareness of the Cape and South Africa’s water crisis. With dams currently at 69% capacity, all it will take to literally run on empty is a few consecutive winters with less than expected rainfall thanks to climate change. Forty percent of our waste water treatment facilities are in a critical state and in need of an upgrade, having outlived their 30 year life span by a decade or so. South Africa loses 37% of clean, drinkable water through leaking pipes and dripping taps every year, while increasing pollution due to rapidly expanding urban areas and illegal dumping add to the crisis.
The Watershed Festival kicks off on Saturday 14 March, with a Family Fun Day at Princess Vlei, offering an array of recreational water sports for visitors to take part in, followed by a fun trail run along the banks of the Liesbeek River on Thursday 18 March. On Friday 20 March, film lovers can enjoy a FREE outdoor screening of local and internationally acclaimed documentary films about water at the Green Point Urban Park from 7pm.
The film festival then moves indoors to South Africa’s oldest independent art-repertory cinema, the Labia Theatre on Orange Street and runs from Saturday 21 March to Tuesday 24 March. On Saturday 21 March, the Friends of the Liesbeek public awareness group are hosting a guided bird-watching and family walk along the banks of the river.
For more information about the Watershed Festival please visit www.thewatershedproject.co.za
Source: SA – The Good News