This year the 15th Anniversary of World Rivers Day (WRD) will be observed under the theme “Waterways in Our Communities” says Father Franklyn Cuffy, Chairperson of the World Rivers Day Committee in Dominica.
World Rivers Day has been recognized internationally since 2005 on the last Sunday in September but Fr. Cuffy explained that Dominica will celebrate the entire month leading up to the day.
Countries and cities all over the world organize and hold events to commemorate the observation. Dominica is no exception. WRD was designated by the United Nations and its observation in Dominica was spearheaded by the Waitukubuli Ecological Foundation (WEF).
This year emphasis will be placed on tree planting. As per usual, there will be the celebration of Titiwi fest and other celebrations in Hamstead, Portsmouth and Castle Bruce and there are also partnerships with DOWASCO, Forestry Division and Planning.
Fr. Cuffy said it is hoped that schools will be involved in the activities and that the organizers have already secured the participation of the environmental club of St.Luke’s Primary. One thing that he is looking at specifically is the opportunity to take the students to the different water systems around the island. He also mentioned the Forestry Division’s plan to plant one million trees. In addition to this initiative, Fr. Cuffy urges the public to play their part and plant a tree themselves along the rivers.
“We have been trying to get legislature to protect our rivers,” Fr.Cuffy revealed and added that the World Rivers Day Committee has been calling for rivers to be protected by law as there is only one section of the Antrim River being protected right now.
The World Rivers Day Committee Chairman said he is calling on Dominicans to do their part in protecting and appreciating our rivers.