Youth empowerment in Central Asia

Youth Vision for Water in Central Asia
Download the Vision produced by youth in English and Russian.
We have had a presence in Central Asia for over 20 years, focused on our field projects in Uzbekistan and Tajikistan. Youth have always been at the heart of our activities in Central Asia. We are mobilizing and empowering a new generation of water leaders in the region to contribute to a sustainable and peaceful development.

Youth gets mobilized in the region

Driven by the desire to link water and peace, together with the youth we are determined to strengthen actions in the region. Several activities are led to empower Central Asian youth committed to water and we induced the creation of a Water Generation movement by uniting young people to join forces to implement a Youth Vision. Rooted in the World Youth Parliament for Water and inspired by the Blue Peace movement, the team generated several action waves targeting transboundary cooperation, educational exchange, application of modern know-how, and popularizing WASH (water sanitation and hygiene). Youth participation at river basin councils became the stepping-stone in this movement. Through our committed work, youth from Central Asia have from now on the opportunity to make their voice heard by decision-makers.

The Astana Workshop, a milestone for youth

In June, the first Astana Youth Workshop on Water - organised during the Expo2017 - helped identify key messages for youth and water in Central Asia. This was an important step on the road to the 8th World Water Forum in Brasilia in March 2018. The results were especially valuable for the following General Assembly of the World Youth Parliament for Water, which was held alongside the World Water Forum. However, strengthening youth engagement in Central Asia and contributing to a sustainable future for their region is the primary goal.

Key actions

The energy and vigour of these youth is evident at all levels and in many forms. After Expo2017's conclusion, they have made significant accomplishments, for example:
  • Youth in Afghanistan created a Youth Parliament for Water for their country, mobilizing people new to the movement.
  • At the launch of the Report of High-Level Panel on Water and Peace held in September 2017 in Geneva, youth presented their messages. The Panel’s mandate is to develop proposals to strengthen frameworks aimed at avoiding and reducing regional and global water-related conflict. It also calls for water to be used as an instrument of peace and cooperation.
  • In Kazakhstan, youth participated at the 20th meeting of the Aral-Syrdarya Basin Council. The Water Resources Committee, which coordinates the country's basin councils, were so impressed by the Young Water Champions that they will now invite youth representatives to meetings of all eight of Kazakhstan's basin councils.
  • In February 2018, we organized a #WaterGeneration Meetup in Dushanbe (Tajikistan) in the context of the pre-consultations for the 8th World Water Forum. With workshops, talks and testimonials, the Meetup prepared Central Asian youth to be agents of change through concrete actions at all levels. Six young water professionals, each from a different Central Asia region, made a big impact by speaking on panels over several sessions.
  • In June 2018, the youth from Central Asia were active participants of the launch of the UN Water Decade in Dushanbe, Tajikistan. They mobilised decision-makers for youth involvement in the implementation of SDG 6 on Water and showcased youth-led concrete actions for water and peace.

What do we want to achieve in Central Asia?

We wish to empower of a new generation of water leaders in Central Asia to contribute to a sustainable and peaceful development of the region through transboundary integrated water resource management. To accomplish this, we aim to enhance the young changemaker’s capacities, strengthening their voice at local, national and regional level, and increasing exchanges between the youth from the region and at global level. In other words:
  1. Giving youth a voice by empowering young water leaders and providing opportunities for connecting them among the states, in the region and with international community.
  2. Encouraging youth to take concrete actions on the ground to influence and implement actions at local and regional levels based on enhanced skills and knowledge.
  3. Providing wide outreach to the youth voice and activities to fosters an open dialogue, including on Water & Peace.

Thanks to our Partners


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  • A Youth Parliament for Water was created in Afghanistan
  • Youth signed an agreement with Kazakhstan basin council to have a permanent representation in basin meetings.
  • The Youth Vision for Water was presented to Central Asian decision-makers (ministers and vice-ministers of the 5 countries), to the High-Level Panel for Water and Peace in Geneva, to local and river basin authorities.


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