On 11th December 2023, Water Watch Penang (WWP) and The Habitat Foundation successfully conducted a river and water education program for SMK Teluk Kumbar at the Penang Botanical Garden.

As the final education program of the year 2023, the Habitat Foundation organized this educational initiative as part of its Field Excursion for Penang Hill Biosphere Reserve (PHBR) Gateways, with sponsorship from CIMB Islamic. Water Watch Penang (WWP) was invited to facilitate an interactive and practical river activity, imparting knowledge on global, regional, and local water crises, and emphasizing the crucial importance of rivers as a vital water resource.

A group comprising 25 students and 2 teachers from SMK Teluk Kumbar actively participated in the program, which ran from 9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. The program was led by Mr. Hanson Yeoh, Program Officer of WWP, with assistance from the trained facilitator, Mr. Yee Jean Chai, and the intern from CGSS USM, Ms. Durgadewi Thurairaj. Additionally, The Habitat Foundation team members played integral roles in the facilitation of the program.

Ms. Lingeshwarry Jewarethnam, the Education Team Lead for The Habitat Foundation, initiated the session by extending a warm welcome to the attendees. Subsequently, Mr. Hanson delivered a talk introducing WWP and addressing Penang’s water situation, emphasizing the importance of water conservation to the participants.

The river activity comprised two sessions, where the initial session focused on biological evaluation, involving the calculation of the Biological Water Quality Index. This was achieved through the catch-and-release method, which tallied the number of macroinvertebrate species discovered.

The second session centered on a chemical assessment, encompassing the testing of pH, dissolved oxygen, ammonia, phosphate, nitrate, and nitrite levels in the river water. Subsequently, a physical assessment ensued, utilizing factors such as river velocity, temperature, and other physical parameters to determine water quality.

WWP wishes to express its gratitude for the valuable opportunity to collaborate with The Habitat Foundation in conducting this educational program. For more information, please get in touch with WWP Executive Manager, Dr. Hong Chern Wern, at hong.wwp@gmail.com or contact WWP at +6019-5751253.

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