Waterkeepers Iraq-Kurdistan in partnership with Humatdijlah and Environmentkeepers organized a full day of water sports and clean up of -Ashkawta Ruxhaw island in Dukan Reservioir with American University of Sulaymaniyah (AUIS) students.
A full day of water-sports including paddle boarding, rafting and swimming raised awareness among AUIS students about the importance of the Dukan Reservoir to provide clean drinking water for Sulaymaniyah and the surrounding communities. Students witnessed the intricate relationship between the reservoir and local communities including picnickers and tourists, they witnessed the impacts of irresponsible disposal of garbage in the reservoir and the damage to the surrounding ecosystems and the quality of water. Students collected at least 6 garbage bags of rubbish from an island approximately 10 meters in lengths and 5 meters in width- picnickers regularly visit the island and rarely dispose of their garbage responsibly leaving items such as: picnic blankets, foil, plastic bags, plastic bottles and polystyrene trays behind - this garbage is blown into the reservoir by winds and pollutes the water communities rely on for drinking, swimming and fishing.
This activity was a pilot official activity for the Waterkeepers Iraq Water-Sporting club, the club aims to raise awareness of the human impacts on major river and water systems, whilst providing an opportunity to have fun, learn new skills, improve psychological wellbeing and clean up already damaged systems. It is hoped that this club will be more active after the COVID-19 pandemic as only small group activities are possible.
If you want more information please contact @Waterkeepers Iraq-Kurdistan