The Rainwater Harvesting Project

The Rainwater Harvesting Project

The Green Network – Jerusalem Conference

30 April 2013

The Ein Yael Living Museum

 

On 30 April 2013, students and teachers from Jerusalem convened at the Ein Yael Living Museum in Jerusalem to showcase their work as part of the  Rainwater Harvesting Project.  Now in its third year of programming, the conference highlighting the project's success featured more than 20 schools throughout Jerusalem with over 300 students participating.  Students from  elementary, junior high, Arab, and Jewish schools - and this year, hearing-impaired students from the Hattie Friedland School for the Deaf  as well  – gathered at the Ein Yael Museum's scenic premises to  take part in various local workshops on the topic of water conservation.  Additionally, teachers leading the projects in the schools also participated in ceremonies and  received certificates for their efforts and stewardship.

 

The heart of the discussion centered on the dilemma of water consumption in Israel.  Workshops and activities were varied, with each of the participating schools featuring their projects, some of which included:

 

  • Self-irrigated plants – students used recycled materials to harvest plants that can operate on a self-irrigated basis. 
  • Water conservation – students learned how to best conserve water by  being given 1.5 liters of water, which had to be sufficient for them to be able to clean their surroundings, wash hands, water plants, and so forth.
  • Mosaic and other artwork  - students created mosaics and other forms of artwork from recycled materials.

 

At the concluding ceremony, one Arab student from the A-Tur girls school in East Jerusalem, read a moving poem she composed, in praise of environmental conservation and sustainable development (see video clip). She then read the poem in Hebrew, demonstrating how the issue traverses cultural and ethnic boundaries.  Another moving highlight of conference featured students from The Hattie Friedland School for the Deaf also danced a dance that was orchestrated through sign language.

 

The project has helped students in Jerusalem schools harvest thousands of cubic meters of rainwater and has contributed to an overall, nation-wide endeavor to educate the wider public in Israel about the need to conserve water and other precious  natural resources - all part of a long-term strategy for environmental sustainability.  Activities target not only students and teachers, but the extended school community – such as parents and friends. 

 

The Rainwater Harvesting Project  in Jerusalem now spans a total of 24 schools throughout Jerusalem, reaching 12,000 students.