Over the past 13 years, conflict has ravaged Northwest Syria, leaving scars on both the land and its people. In February 2023, after earthquakes dealt a further blow, crippling vital water infrastructure, residents of camps in the northwest faced prolonged water shortages due to damage sustained by a crucial elevated water tank. However, the International Organization for Migration () managed to reconstruct three elevated water tanks, restoring access to safe and clean water for over 67,500 earthquake-affected communities.

Water scarcity exacerbates conflicts globally, but sustainable management initiatives, such as IFAD-supported projects in Mongolia and Colombia, demonstrate how equitable access to water can foster peace and prosperity.

In Rubkona, South Sudan, Nyagara Maluit shows off charcoal briquettes made out of carbonized water hyacinths - an invasive species that disrupts waterways and aquatic food systems, exacerbating flooding. Turning them into sustainable fuel helps reduce deforestation. Over 70% of the world's food-insecure people are in areas where water is scarce. Climate change is worsening water-related hazards and land degradation, leading to social, gender and education inequality. The World Food Programme () responds to water-related disasters and provides emergency food and cash assistance around the world while also building resilience in communities by restoring ecosystems to improve long-term water availability and food access.

Women and girls were disproportionately affected by the devastating floods that hit Pakistan in 2022. Nisha, a seven-year-old girl from the Mirpurkhas District of Sindh, had to endure months of displacement and walk several miles every day to access clean water after her home and latrines were destroyed. Sampa, a 55-year-old widow, fell ill after drinking contaminated water during the floods. With the responsibility of caring for her ten-year-old child, she struggled to fetch water daily in the scorching heat. The efforts by the International Organization for Migration ) to construct latrines, handwashing stations, and lead-line hand pumps in Nisha and Sampa's villages brought relief and improved access to clean water and hygiene services.

Water is crucial to life and economies, but it can also cause or be affected by conflict. The risk of conflict is increasing due to water scarcity and climate change, making effective water resource management essential for peace. Remote sensing, using open-access satellite data, can help monitor water resources, even in conflict-affected areas. The , a tool created by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the 香港六合彩开奖 Nations (), has been used in conflict zones like Syria, Sudan, Mali, and Sri Lanka to monitor water resources, reduce conflict, and restore access to water.

Amidst Yemen's conflict, community-led water projects are revitalizing communities and providing essential access to clean water, transforming lives and easing burdens for millions.

Illustration depicting water waves around a peace icon with two pigeons.

Water can create peace or spark conflict. When water is scarce or polluted, or when people have unequal, or no access, tensions can rise between communities and countries. When we cooperate on water, we create a positive ripple effect 鈥 fostering harmony, generating prosperity and building resilience to shared challenges. We must act upon the realization that water is not only a resource to be used and competed over 鈥 it is a human right, intrinsic to every aspect of life. This World Water Day (22 March), let's unite and use  and build a more stable and prosperous tomorrow.

A comprehensive data mapping exercise spearheaded by in informal settlements in Serbia at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic uncovered that more than 30,000 Roma had little or no access to drinking water, over half lived without sewage services, and some 24,000 had limited or no electricity. The six-month effort identified 167,975 inhabitants in 702 Roma settlements and distributed 72,000 packages of essential food items, water, and protective gear to Roma households. The intervention strengthened Serbia鈥檚 capacity to gather and use data for broader Roma human rights and development efforts. As a result of this initiative, hundreds of Roma living in informal settlements now have safe drinking water.

Grappling with water scarcity exacerbated by rough terrain and rapid population growth, residents of Ta'iz , Yemen face immense challenges accessing clean water, a struggle alleviated by the installation of a solar-powered well pump by IOM.

Water scarcity is a critical issue for an increasing number of countries, forcing them to be more creative in water management and securing water sources.

Recently displaced children in the southern Gaza Strip are accessing only 1.5 to 2 litres of water each day, well below the recommended requirements just for survival, according to estimates. According to humanitarian standards, the minimum amount of water needed in an emergency is 15 litres, which includes water for drinking, washing and cooking. For survival alone, the estimated minimum is 3 litres per day. The impact of this on children is particularly dramatic because children are also more susceptible to dehydration, diarrhea, disease and malnutrition.

shows the effects and repercussions of water in Peru because of climate change. 

The Quinault, a Native tribal community in Washington State, has been forced to relocate their coastal village to higher ground as high tides threaten to wash away the land they鈥檝e inhabited for thousands of years.聽As weather systems spin out of control across the globe, we take a closer loo

Water is essential for life and food production. Globally, 70% of freshwater is used for agriculture, which is why changing the way we grow our food and produce agricultural products can have the greatest impact. Approximately 2.4 billion people currently live in countries, where water resources are under stress, yet global water demand for agriculture is expected to increase by 35% by 2050. From the food to the fashion industries, we often take this fundamental element for granted. On this  is drawing attention to water and highlighting four individuals, who are taking action to manage this precious resource wisely, while inspiring others.