2011 Water Advocacy Agenda

2011 Water Advocacy Agenda

Local UN Group Tackles Global Water Issues

The following editorial was published in the Centre Daily Times and Highlights UNA of Centre County's work  to promote understanding of United Nations role in combating the global water crisis.

Water--Two Billion People are Dying for It!

Fulfilling its commitment to build understanding of and support for the vital work of the United Nations, the Centre County United Nations Association will present an inspiring and informative evening at this year’s UN Day Dinner Celebration, to be held in State College on October 23rd.  Each year, the group casts light on an urgent worldwide issue, and this year’s focus on global water issues brings us face to face with some sobering statistics, provided by the United Nations:

  • 1.1 billion people lack access to safe drinking water;
  • 3,900 children die every day from unsafe water;
  •  1.2 billion people lives in areas where water is physically scarce;
  • 46% of the global population has no access to basic sanitation.

Learn more about the UN Decade for Water at http://www.un.org/waterforlifedecade/.


In response to the global water crisis, the UN Celebration will showcase the accomplishments of local organizations who are working to assist communities at home and abroad as they face water scarcity and lack of potable drinking water.  Tangible opportunities to make a difference in the lives of those who daily face a lack of safe drinking water will be offered, through donations to water related projects ranging from:


·   Boxes that purify and store water, and contain humanitarian aid items such as clothing and other emergency supplies;

·   Water filters that are sustainable and filtrate at point of use, removing parasites, bacteria and viruses from contaminated water;

·  Roll-able drums that adults and even children can pull on the ground, avoiding injuries caused by carrying water on the head;

·  Water bottles that are used in the transport of water to communities in need.


The guest speaker for the event is Dr. Rick Schuhmann, the Walter L. Robb Director of Engineering Leadership Development at Penn State.  His talk, “Are Water Wars Inevitable?” will explore how climate change may affect our global fresh water resources, and will ask how we, as global citizens, may respond.  What will we do as population increases and regional water resources decrease?  Is conflict inevitable?  Are water wars on the horizon? 


Instrumental to this special event is the Centre County UN Association Council of Organizations, a 17-member coalition of local groups established in 2005, whose missions include support for the work of the United Nations.  Current council members include Altrusa International of Centre County, AAUW, Friends Meeting, Global Connections, Hadassah, Harris Township Lions Club, League of Women Voters of Centre County, Soroptimist International of Centre County, St. Paul’s Methodist Women, State College Downtown Rotary Club, State College Evening Rotary Club, State College Family YMCA, State College Lions Club, State College Presbyterian Church’s Mission Ministry Unit, Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Centre County and the University Baptist & Brethren Church.


Evening highlights also include internationals from thirty nations, and a special performance by AnDa Union:  Music of Mongolia. 


The October 23 event will be held at the Ramada Inn in State College, and starts at 5:30 p.m.  The cost of a dinner ticket is $30, and the reservation deadline is October 14th.  To attend, email Norma Keller at nrmkeller@gmail.com. 

Visit www.unacentrecountypa.org to learn more about the Centre County United Nations Association, and to make a gift to this year’s water project(s).   In contemplating the United Nations commitment to the Decade for Water (2005-2015), we look beyond the challenges of our own day-to-day lives, and recognize our roles, as citizens of the world.  We invite you to join us in this important initiative.

Norma Keller

Vice-President, Centre County UNA Association
Founder, UNA Council of Organizations

  • For more information and to Register for the UN Day Dinner "HERE"
  • Learn more about the water projects being sponsored by UNA Centre County "HERE"

Other advocacy initiatives:

    "Our Environment"

  • Hot Politics:  A film and discussion program.  Moderated by  Dr. Don Brown,   Associate Professor of Environmental Ethics, Science, and Law, Penn State.
    • View  the film online
    • Hear the discussion before and after the film 

  • Earth Day activities  -- We participated at Penn State's Earth Day Activities in the HUB  on April 22nd, sharing a booth with Penn State's Interinstitutional Consortium for Indigenous Knowledge.     Focus was on forest resources and desertification. in honor of the UN's 2011 International Year of the Forest and the  UN Decade for Desertification.  For more info view the UN websites listed below.

  • Water for Life, Decade of Action 2005-2015.  Many of our programs and activities this year will focus on issues related to water security.  Including our Annual Dinner program on October 23rd, 2011

  • Say  No to Violence

Helen Sheehy,
Sep 21, 2011, 4:21 AM
Helen Sheehy,
Jun 11, 2011, 8:38 AM
Helen Sheehy,
Jun 11, 2011, 8:38 AM
Helen Sheehy,
Jun 11, 2011, 8:38 AM