Importance of youth participation in Basin Councils

Feb. 24, 2020

The overall goal of CAY4W is the Empowerment of a new generation of water leaders in Central Asia to contribute to a sustainable and peaceful development of the region through improved transboundary integrated water resource management.


The objectives of the project are:

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 taking concrete Actions on the ground - young water leaders to influence and implement actions at local and regional levels based on enhanced skills and knowledge;

3.     Providing wide Outreach of the youth voice and activities to fosters an open dialogue, including on Water & Peace.


Review of research on the potential of education in the field of water resources, recommendations for Kazakhstan:

- ...the content of textbooks does not always reflect the practice of water use. At the same time, state structures, basin inspections, local Executive bodies, water users, and other stakeholders have accumulated a wealth of experience that can be used to create training manuals, case studies, case studies, videos, posters, and other educational resources.

- Representatives of state bodies can help to find places of practice for students to "enter" the specialty and get their first work skills. Places of practice can be basin inspections, water farms, ... (p. 39)

- Collection of materials for term papers and theses should take place in advanced basic bodies, where students should work with modern materials, documents, technologies and techniques. Students should not be allowed to use old data taken from books and archival materials of long-past years in their practice reports. In theses, it is necessary to focus on solving real problems of the economy of Kazakhstan... (p. 39)

The above reasons are relevant not only in Kazakhstan, but also to a different extent in each country of the region. We consider participation in professional governmental and non-governmental organizations useful not only for young professionals, but also for students for the following reasons:

  • Students will have the opportunity to present their research, receive valuable comments and recommendations from professionals, and find mentors/ co-supervisors of research projects at the places of professional practice;
  • Training through observation – young water workers will have a chance to get acquainted with the real problems of the water sector and their solutions through consultations;
  • Expand the network of professional contacts by getting to know the experts present at the meetings.

For these reasons, our team is also working to increase the opportunities of young water specialists in the region, promoting the idea of full participation of young people in the activities of government and professional associations and basin councils.


In 2019, our Association was represented at meetings of three basin councils in Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.


On October 4, 2019, the CAY4W national Coordinator for Tajikistan, Mahmudov Sharif, participated in a workshop on basin management and planning of the Kafirnigan river,

Tajikistan. At this meeting, the mission and activities of CAY4W were presented, as well as an initiative was put forward for permanent membership of young people in the basin councils as full representatives with the right to vote. On February 19, 2020, the Ministry of Energy and Water Resources of Tajikistan approved this initiative.

The national Coordinator of CAY4W for Uzbekistan, Akramov Isomiddin, participated in the national workshop on the presentation of basin plans for the Aksuv and Shakhrikhansay rivers in Uzbekistan. On 5-6 November, Central Asia Youth for Water Network (CAY4W) was well represented at the National seminar on the Presentation of Basin Plans of the Aksuv and Shahrihansay Rivers in Tashkent.

The event was organized within the framework of EU Programme “Sustainable management of water resources in rural areas in Uzbekistan” – Component 1 led by GIZ.

Isomiddin Akramov - National Coordinator of CAY4W in Uzbekistan delivered a presentation titled “Youth mobilization in the water sector in Central Asia: Participation of Young Professionals in Basin Council Meetings”.

During the event, along with IWMI, other partners of the project such as CAREC and UBA-Austrian Environmental Agency presented their project results on introduction of IWRM principles as well as basin planning. The focus group of the training consisted of stakeholders of the Naryn-Karadarya (Andijan) and Amu-Kashkadarya (Kashkadarya) River Basins, as well as other four selected Basin authorities, pumping stations, farmers and Irrigation System Authorities.

At the meeting of the Chu-Talas River Basin Council in Kazakhstan, CAY4W was represented by the regional coordinator, Lyazzat Syrlybayeva.

We intend to continue working in this direction and achieve full support for youth initiatives to further strengthen cooperation between the countries of the region and transition to a more sustainable and rational use of water resources.