The World Wide Fund for Nature (WWF) has attracted Zambian boxer Catherine Phiri and several other celebrities to the newly launched “Journey of Water” campaign meant to raise awareness on the importance of water in Zambian communities.

Singers Petersen Zagaze, James Sakala, comedian Kabova, legendary songbird Maureen Lupo Lilanda and popular television talk show host Innocent Kalaluka endorsed the WWF water campaign and attended the grand launch.

Commending WWF Zambia on the campaign, the 23-year-old boxer said water was a very important resource that needs to be adequately preserved.

Catherine pledged to join the drive to raise awareness of the prominence of water, calling for its better care. The former World Boxing Council (WBC) bantamweight gold champion said many people do no appreciate water in their communities until the commodities becomes scares.

“I have really learned a lot this evening. I also now appreciate the importance of water better and I will spread the message about the need to care for it,” pledged Catherine.

And HIVOS regional advocacy manager for sustainable diets William Chilufya echoed Catherine’s sentiments, stressing the link between water and good diet.

“The initiative by WWF of drawing our attention to water is very important. Many a time we don’t realise the importance of water. I think the strategy that they have come up with of the ‘Journey of Water’ will enable a lot of people to better use water and reduce waste in this country. There’s a lot of wastage and yet we have a lot of people who do not have access to clean and freshwater,” he said.

From 22 nd to 24 th June 2017, WWF Zambia will mobilise a group of influential Zambians and media to undertake a 63-kilometre walk from Kafue to Lusaka to raise awareness on sustainable water stewardship and call for better care and preservation of water. The Journey of Water campaign was announced on Wednesday May 10, 2017 in Lusaka at a breakfast meeting graced by Minister of Water, Sanitation and Environmental Protection Lloyd Kaziya and Permanent Secretary Dr Bishop Edward Chomba among other stakeholders.

Meanwhile, WWF Zambia head of Communications, Eneya Phiri has lamented that while water covers 70 per cent of the Earth’s surface, only 3 per cent of all water on Earth is freshwater. Furthermore, he says that only a meagre 1 per cent of this is accessible for human use and despite its significance and scarcity, water is perhaps one of the most underappreciated resources.

“This campaign is aimed at reconnecting people to the real source of water – nature; reminding us that ‘water does not come from a tap’. This year’s campaign will focus on the Kafue Flats; highlighting the route water takes from Kafue to Lusaka. From 22nd – 24th June 2017, it will culminate into a literal walk through the Lower Kafue sub catchment, from Kafue town all the way to Lusaka,” Phiri explained.

At its core, the campaign will leverage the power of offline and online media platforms to raise awareness and create public demand for sustainable management of the country’s water resources. Participants can follow the journey on social media using the hashtag #journeyofwaterzambia.