WYN’s YouKnoW at 2018 Biennial WISA conference in Cape Town

Breaking Boundaries, Connecting Ideas

By: Tlhoriso Tšepang Morienyane (t.morienyane@wateryouthnetwork.org)


Over the past week, from the 24th to 27th June 2018, Water Institute of Southern Africa held a biennial conference in Cape Town South Africa. It was on the second day (25th) of the conference that Tlhoriso Morienyane from Lesotho had the opportunity to present the YouKnow! Platform under the session theme “Pooling Together; Enabling Participation through good governance, data sharing”.  

YouKnoW! stands for Youth-driven Knowledge in Water. The platform is showcasing information about youth projects and organisations on an interactive world map, which can be filtered using different criteria. It is a tool designed to connect different youth initiatives and to promote and support existing projects in the water sector with meaningful youth participation. The platform goals are to inspire, develop, and disseminate knowledge; to support communication on successful and innovative practices implemented by young people and youth organizations; and to connect these local experiences to global efforts related to the Sustainable Development Agenda 2030.

The presentation was a success with a large pool of audience from senior professionals, media and young professionals from South Africa, Lesotho and the Netherlands. Amongst the people who attended were members of the Young Water Professional South Africa (YWP-ZA). Following the presentation, which was the first conference presentation by Tlhoriso, the audience asked several questions.

Amongst some of the questions asked were:

  • What is the difference between WYN and YWP-ZA which a member of YWP-ZA volunteered to explain what YWN-ZA does after which Tlhoriso talked about YWN and YouKnow!!
  • What are the limits to what information can be included in the YouKnow! Platform?
  • How long does it take to have the project up on the Platform?

Here Tlhoriso and a YWP-ZA volunteer explained that WYN is a connector of youth either individuals or organisations in within water sector and beyond on a global scale, While YWP-ZA brings together young people working and interested in water sector in South Africa, it is headed by International Water Association. He also explained that you can currently share different information about your project or your youth organisation in YouKnoW!. It is mainly to put the location and scope, the status, the category and a short description. The YouKnoW! team is currently brainstorming what other information should be available in the future. If you have your own idea about it, please get in touch (YouKnoWFeedback@wateryouthnetwork.org )

As the team is currently focused on the transfer of all projects to a newly designed website (which will be launched soon) the review of projects can take up to 4 weeks. In the future the aim is to bring it down to 2 weeks.

Find the platform here and get to know more about the idea, the goals and the team behind the YouKnoW! platform here.

The YouKnoW! platform will be presented next during Stockholm World Water Week 2018. Come and visit us!
You can find the programme

Figure 1: The YouKnoW!! Platform Presentation by Tlhoriso Morienyane


Other Activities at WISA including Youth

Strengthening collaboration between Lesotho and South Africa through Youth Involvement.

The Dutch, South African and Lesotho delegates had a round table discussion where they were discussing how to strengthen collaboration between Lesotho and South Africa with the participation of Youth from both countries. The need for collaboration comes after a successful Wetskills South Africa where Lesotho presented a case which triggered the need for collaboration between downstream users and the upstream users, in this case South Africa and Lesotho respectively. The key points discussed were

  • Implementation of Wetland Awareness Programme
  • Bringing South African and Lesotho Young professionals together

The planned activities going forward were:

  • Implement a Wetland Awareness Programme to showcase later in the National Wetland Day.
  • Form Young Water Professional- Lesotho (YWP-Ls) with the help of YWN-ZA. The new YWP-ZA chairperson Suvritha Rampal was invited to the meeting where she presented what YWP-ZA is and what it does and as a result it was decided that Lesotho’s Youth from theWater Sector should also form YWP-Ls
  • Organise Wetskills Lesotho 2019 for early 2019.


Figure 2: delegation from Lesotho, Netherlands and South Africa of which most of

them were the participants of 2018 Wetskills South Africa