In the heartland of Kenya’s enchanting Ewaso Ngiro River basin, a movement of epic proportions unfolds—the “Journey of Water.” Led by WWF Kenya in partnership with the esteemed CESPAD (Center for Social Planning and Administrative Development), this extraordinary campaign emerges to awaken the world to the untold wonders of water. It sets the stage for a vibrant dialogue among stakeholders, igniting a wave of change that will shape the future of this awe-inspiring region. With a resolute purpose, the Journey of Water seeks to establish a harmonious and sustainable balance in sharing precious water resources, safeguarding fragile ecosystems, and fostering peaceful coexistence among the communities whose very existence relies on this life-giving force.
Kenya has braved the relentless storm of a severe drought crisis, leaving in its wake the depletion of vital water sources and untold hardships for millions of people and their cherished livestock. As the nation’s thirst grows insatiable, projected to triple within the next two decades, the Ewaso Ngiro River basin—Kenya’s majestic lifeline—stands as the largest in the land. It nourishes and sustains approximately 4 million people across six counties. Yet, this arid and semi-arid region finds itself vulnerable to the relentless clutches of water scarcity.
In the breathtaking journey along the banks of the Ewaso Ngiro River, participants witness an unfolding saga of challenges, painting a vivid tapestry of adversity. From over-abstraction and illegal water connections to misguided irrigation practices, pollution, soil erosion, encroachment, and simmering conflicts between upstream and downstream communities, the urgency of sustainable water management and conservation efforts becomes starkly apparent. To protect the basin’s delicate ecosystems and the livelihoods that rely upon its life-giving flow, immediate action is needed.
Within the realm of the campaign, a symphony of key terms resound with significance—water conservation, sustainable management, equitable distribution, scarcity, protection, security, restoration, engagement, participation, and climate resilience. These formidable concepts form the bedrock of CESPAD’s tireless efforts, ready to confront water-related challenges head-on and spearhead the sustainable use and protection of water resources in the Ewaso Ngiro River basin.
With each step taken along the Journey of Water, the observations and results reverberate with resounding clarity. They cast a radiant light upon the paramount importance of equitable water sharing, forging unwavering cooperation and collaboration between upstream and downstream users, and building unbreakable connections in the holistic management of water sources—from their origins to their majestic downstream flow. As the echoes of the campaign resound, CESPAD’s visionary recommendations echo through the corridors of change. Empowering communities to manage their water resources, nurturing a culture of water conservation, harnessing the power of water harvesting and storage during abundant rainy seasons, tapping into precious groundwater reserves through the sinking of boreholes, rehabilitating critical catchments, reviewing water allocation plans, promoting sustainable irrigation practices, engaging stakeholders at every turn, and garnering the unwavering support of the political class—these actions form the roadmap to a future that is resilient, flourishing, and sustainable.
Together, bound by the transformative power of the Journey of Water, communities rise above adversity, embracing the timeless wisdom of harmonious coexistence with nature’s most precious lifeline. The Ewaso Ngiro basin emerges as a beacon of hope—an oasis where thriving ecosystems flourish, and collective action triumphs. As the journey continues, Kenya’s heart beats stronger, and the spirit of water stewardship thrives within every community touched by this extraordinary campaign.