Leaders of Different Faiths come together for a consultation on WASH

April 18, Patna: World Vision India (WVI), a humanitarian organization working for child protection, organized a state level inter-faith consultation focusing on the need to initiate common actions for Water, Sanitation, and Hygiene (WASH) and the wellbeing of children, at Hotel Clarks Inn in Patna on Tuesday. The consultation was an attempt to engage on WASH, with religious leaders of different faiths on a common platform to influence and promote positive practices.

The consultation also deliberated on issues related to malnutrition and stunting in India. Realizing the need for consolidating efforts to ensure that India can meet its commitment to the Sustainable Development Goals, World Vision India engaged with Faith Based Organizations (FBO) and leaders across the country.

The event was attended by faith leaders from 10 districts of Bihar, government officials and civil society organizations. Panelists included Swami Hari Narayan Anand, National President, Sadhu Samaj; Ms. Pragya Agarwal, Instructor, Art of Living; Mr. Shailendra Singh, Vice President, Patna Sahib Gurudwara Committee; Md. Sohrab Nadwi, Deputy Secretary, Islamic Institution; Ms. Rivata Bhiku, Buddhist Monk and Mr. Praveen More, WASH Specialist, UNICEF.

Speaking at the event, Chief Guest Mr. Radhakant Kumar, Project Director DPAP (Drought prone area program), Rural development, Govt of Bihar said, "This is a good initiative where people of different faith have come together on a common platform. I am sure people will understand the importance of WASh and take this forward in their own best way."

Mr. Anil Khandekar, Director, Programmes, World Vision India appreciating the participation of religious leaders from all faiths said, “Using clean drinking water, use of toilets and appropriate handwashing are simple behaviors that go a long way to ensure good health and prevention of diseases in children. Adopting WASH practices need to become part of everyday living and Faith Based Organisations can play a key role in motivating families to take forward the good practices”.

The panel discussion focused on the status of children in Bihar, and the role religious leaders play in encouraging families to practice positive WASH behaviors. The consultation emphasized the importance for strengthening Faith Based Organisation’s awareness and understanding of community services.

In Bihar, World Vision India works in Patna (Urban areas), Vaishali, Bhojpur, Muzaffarpur, Nalanda, Nawada, Khagaria, Madhepura, Saharsa & Jamui districts through Area Development Programs. World Vision India has previously successfully conducted state level interfaith consultations in Bhopal, Chhattisgarh, Ranchi and Jaipur.

For more information, please contact: Impuri Ngayawon @ Impuri_Ngayawon@wvi.org

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