Xylem Watermark CSR Programme – Water-Wise River Education Programme with SK Convent Pulau Tikus – 9 October 2023, Penang Botanical Garden

On October 9, 2023, Water Watch Penang (WWP) and Xylem SEA executed a successful collaboration as part of their CSR program at the Botanical Garden, Penang. The program involved a total of 40 Standard 5 and 6 students, 4 teachers, and Mr. Mohd Fuad bin Hj Rosli, the Chairman of the PIBG from SK Convent Pulau Tikus, Penang. The program ran from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm. In contrast to the previous iteration, which adopted a lecture-based approach focusing on water conservation, the current program consisted of a river education activity where students had the opportunity to assess river water quality firsthand.

The program began with a welcome address by Prof. Chan, President of WWP, followed by Dr. Hong Chern Wern, Executive Manager of WWP, with assistance from the Program Officer, Mr. Hanson Yeoh. Prof. Chan and Dr. Hong provided an overview of WWP, its background, objectives, and highlighted the local water crisis, especially in Penang, recognized as one of the water-poor states. Following this, students were organized into four groups to undertake river water quality assessments, guided by WWP’s trained facilitators: Mr. Sharvind Sivan, Mr. Yee Jean Chai, Ms. Tew Yi Lin, Ms. Puteri Nur Atiqah, and Ms. Khairul Barieya.

Under the guidance of the trained facilitators, students began with the physical assessment of river water quality, testing parameters such as temperature, turbidity, and velocity. Next, in the chemical assessment section, students tested pH levels, dissolved oxygen, and the presence of organic compounds like ammonia, nitrate, nitrite, and phosphate in the river water.

After a short break, Mr. Mohamad Hapiz B Mohd Rosli, Country Head of Xylem Water Solutions Malaysia Sdn Bhd, delivered a brief introduction about the Xylem Watermark program and welcomed the students. He provided an overview of the company and outlined its efforts to address water crisis challenges in schools. One notable initiative involves the provision of Aquablocks, serving as a source of potable drinking water through the filtration of ground or surface water.

In the final session, biological assessments were undertaken, with students capturing and identifying macroinvertebrates serving as indicators for assessing the river’s health. Notable aquatic macroinvertebrates captured included stonefly nymphs, dragonfly nymphs, and freshwater shrimps. A remarkable highlight was the discovery of a sizable crayfish by one group, signifying a significant find, as crayfish typically inhabit exceptionally clean water environments.

Water Watch Penang extends its appreciation to Xylem South East Asia for the privilege of being part of the Xylem Watermark CSR Program. Furthermore, WWP expresses its gratitude to SK Convent Pulau Tikus, particularly Mr. Mohd Fuad bin Hj Rosli, Chairman of the PIBG, for facilitating the implementation of this river education program.

For more information, please contact WWP Executive Manager Dr. Hong Chern Wern at hong.wwp@gmail.com or reach out to WWP at +60195751253.

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