Budapest: Wetskills challenges Young Water Professionals
Preventing water crises. That was the theme of the Budapest Water Summit that took place from 15 to 17 October. In Budapest twelve international Young Water Professionals worked in three teams for two weeks on water solutions for the future. The Wetskills Water Challenge is an initiative of the Dutch government and water associations. The team that developed an educational program on the value of water for future generations was awarded with the first prize by the jury during the Budapest Water Summit.
“The educational program of the winning team was well tailored for different target groups and perfectly applicable in the Hungarian situation”, the jury concluded. In addition to this case brought forward by the Dutch organisation Dutch Wavemakers, there was a request from the Budapest University of Technology and Economics to develop a concept for resource recovery of water and resources. Van Hall Larenstein University of Applied Sciences submitted a case for the development of an inspiration guide with valuable drought measures for agriculture. “A former student of Van Hall Larenstein was able to share in his team up-to-date knowledge about squares for rainwater in cities and disconnecting rainwater pipes from sewers”, tells supervisor Marcel Rompelman who is also teaching at Van Hall Larenstein in the Netherlands.
The Hungarian edition of Wetskills started on Friday, October 5. All kinds of introductory activities took place during the weekend and in the beginning of the first week a few trips to local water companies followed. After these activities the teams started seriously with their assignments. Young people participating in a Wetskills Water Challenge program always work on real water cases for two weeks in international, multidisciplinary teams.
The international teams gathered different nationalities. Besides Hungarian and Dutch professionals an expert from Vietnam and South Africa participated. Rompelman: “All participants were divided in teams where the diversity is as large as possible. That way you are able to learn most from each other. ”
The Wetskills Foundation organized the Water Challenge for the first time in Budapest in Hungary. The program was developed in collaboration with the Hungary Water Association (HWA), the Technical University of Budapest and the Dutch Embassy in Budapest. The Wetskills Water Challenge took place for the tenth time in Europe, after previous events in Romania, United Kingdom and the Netherlands.
The Budapest Water Summit 2019, under the motto ‘Prevention of water crises’, offers a platform for political decision makers, researchers and representatives of the economic and financial sector to discuss the challenges and find solutions for achieving a world in which sufficient safe water available to everyone.
Young Water Professionals that are interested in participating in a Wetskills Water Challenge can contact the organisation here.