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H.H. Pujya Swami Chidanand Saraswatiji | | GIWA Interfaith Leaders Meet during the Global Citizen Festival
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GIWA Interfaith Leaders Meet during the Global Citizen Festival

Nov 23 2016

GIWA Interfaith Leaders Meet during the Global Citizen Festival

On occasion of the Global Citizen India Festival in Mumbai, the Global Interfaith WASH Alliance’s core leaders met internally, with the technical support of UNICEF India, to discuss how each of them would commit and contribute to concrete actions towards their collective mission to improve WASH and work towards #SDG6 within their congregations and communities.

The meeting was opened and welcomed by GIWA India’s Founder Pujya Swami Chidanand Saraswatiji and moderated by Pujya Swamiji and GIWA’s Secretary General, Sadhvi Bhagawati Saraswatiji. Interfaith leaders taking part in the discussions included: HE Drukpa Thuksey Rinpoche, Bhai Mohinder Singhji, Ven Bhikkhu Sanghasenaji, Dr.Kalbe Sadiqji, Sufi Chishtiji, Acharya Dr. Lokesh Muniji, Imam Umer Ahmed Ilyasiji and Swamini Adityananda Saraswatiji

There was experiential sharing by Swati Mohapatra, UNICEF, Communications Specialist, Advocacy and Communications. There was also sharing about district wise approach to Swachh Bharat Mission, India by Shalini Prasad, UNICEF, Communications for Development Specialist (WASH), joined by insightful inputs by Manish Wasuja, UNICEF, WASH Specialist and Purvi Malhotra, Communications and Advocacy Officer at UNICEF India.

The fruitful discussions and future action plan were made with plans to support the launching of GIWA branches in key cities across India as well as inspire much needed action within faith communities to not only provide infrastructure for WASH, such as building toilets, but to inspire behaviour change to utilize and maintain this infrastructure. Reflections on this incredibly successful GIWA year, starting from Ganga Sagar Mela, spanning to Nasik Kumbha Mela, Haridwar Kumbha Mela, Ujjain Simhasth Kumbh Mahaparv – 2016, #GIWALadakh Summit, #DevDiwali pledge in Varanasi and the #GlobalCitizenFestival were made and plans for next year were laid. Wrap up was done by Stephanie Raison, UNICEF, Officer in Charge of Advocacy and Communication as well as Pujya Swamiji and Sadhviji.

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