After a week of workshops and five weeks of online brainstorming, discussion, and mentoring sessions, the UNESCO Water Resilience Challenge 2021 finally reached its final phase! On Friday, 12 November 2021, the five teams or UWRC 2021 were presented their final ideas and solutions to the juries. Slightly different from the previous team's presentation, we were finally able to see the collaboration between the team and their mentor on this final presentation! At the end of every team's presentations, 2-3 minutes were allocated to the team's mentor, allowing them to give the final and closing statement to promote and boost the team's winning chance!

All the teams also created a banner consisting of their problem identification and offered solutions. The team's banners were then uploaded on our Instagram account to determine the favourite team's banner based on Instagram likes. The winning team banner and the favourite banner will then be printed and showcased at the 13th Southeast Asian Biosphere Reserves Network (SeaBRnet) Meeting & International Conference 2021 in Mataram, Lombok, West Nusa Tenggara.

The Final Presentation

The Final Presentation was started at 02.00 PM Jakarta's time by few words from The Water Agency, followed by the introduction of the final juries: Rien Dam as a representative of Water NL, Maulana Rizki from UNESCO Jakarta, Gregor Van Essen from The Water Agency, Meliawati from Rinjani – Lombok UNESCO Global Geopark Management Agency, and Baiq Sri Mulya from Destination Management Organization (DMO) Sembalun.

Afterwards, the back-to-back team's presentation began. The final presentation allowed each team to present their final results only for 10 minutes, followed by 2 minutes closing statement from the mentor and 5-7 minutes of Q&A with the juries.

Nirvana x Resilience BV

Nirvana Team was the first team to present. After carefully identifying and choosing problems that the team wants to focus on, two problem statements arise: water availability and water accessibility. Using SWOT analysis and multi-criteria analysis, the team successfully identified the main solution for their identified problems: Eco-Agro Tourism. The Eco-Agro Tourism consist of 4 programs which are Adoption Tree Program, Land Cover Rehabilitation, Natural Coloring Plat Garden, and Eco-Homestay. Together with Thijs de Klein from Resilience BV, their mentor, Ammar, Asadia, Agung, Fathiya, and Nurisa dreamed of making Sembalun a smart tourism destination to overcome the district's water crisis. 

CAWS x Urban+ Institute

Anggita, Kinanti, Devian, Hanif, and Fadel vision for Sembalun is "Water resistance for independent and sustainable Sembalun". To realize the vision, the team has three main focuses of intervention: (1) Education, as the base of water security efforts in the community, (2) Infrastructure, as a tool to achieve water security in Sembalun, and (3) Tourists, as the biggest external factor of water security in Sembalun. Together with Ardzuna Sinaga, Vallin Tsarina, Yugo Phurbojoyo, and Wagiono Bustami, the team's mentors from Urban+ Institute, CAWS Team believe these three concept solutions will bring more resistance and resilience to Sembalun in facing water challenges. 

Sembalun x Nazava 

The team's main focus in approaching the solutions for Sembalun is to improve the cooperative and collaboration level of the community. Guided by Guido van Hofwegen, their mentor from Nazava, Sembalun Team started by facilitating the community with a website supporting interconnectedness and transparency between related stakeholders called Sopoq Sembalun. Amanda, Firman, Sunan, Ibnu, and Ririn believe that involving and synergizing all stakeholders would lead to an ideal condition that enables Sembalun to tackle water challenges.

Ez Yoke x ICLEI Indonesia 

Ez Yoke Team has a vision to "realize the sustainability of water resources' resilience by improving climate-adaptive management and conservation". Amelia, Elnaya, Gomgom, Shalahuddin, and Taufik focus on their three main solutions: healthy watershed, water efficiency movement, and conservation-based settlement and tourism. Collaborated with Ari Mochamad, Selamer Daroyni, Suryani Amin, and Happy Tiara, the mentors from ICLEI Indonesia, Ez Yoke Team offered various programs to solve water issues and problems in Sembalun. 

Waterbender x AWS Indonesia 

The team has the vision to create an "adaptive water resources with nature-based solutions concept for water resiliency in Sembalun District". Together with Gracia Plenita Agnindhira, the team's mentor from AWS Indonesia, the team has three main solutions: sustainable water resources, artificial conservation, and community empowerment. Rosyad, Elvira, Fachri, Sabrina, and Sena believe these three solutions would bring water resiliency in Sembalun District for 2030 and beyond. 

The Winner!

After all the teams and mentors have presented their ideas and solutions for water resiliency in Sembalun District, the juries and organizers move to an assigned break-out room to calculate the team's score (from the first presentation until the final presentation). After around 15 minutes of calculation and some discussion, the winning team name was finally decided.

And the winner of UNESCO Water Resilience Challenge 2021 is ……. 

CONGRATULATION TO THE WATERBENDER TEAM!!!!

Waterbender successfully showed excellent team performance not only on the final presentation but also since the first presentation. This team was constantly on the lead since day one of the Challenge! The team showed outstanding teamwork, and it shows in their thinking process, problem identification, the team's vision, and they offered solutions. Special thanks to Gracia Plenita Agnindhira from AWS Indonesia for fantastically guiding and mentoring the Waterbender for 1.5 months. Congratulations to Waterbender and AWS Indonesia!

The 13th SeaBRnet Meeting and International Conference 2021

As mentioned previously, the winning team of UWRC 2021 will be present their concept ideas at the 13th Southeast Asian Biosphere Reserve Network (SeaBRnet) meeting on 16 November 2021. The 13th SeaBRnet was held on Mataram, Lombok, from 15 – 17 November 2021. Two out of five team members, Elvira and Fachri, then flew to Lombok on 14 November 2021, joined the event and did the offline presentation. At the same time, the other three members have joined the event and did the presentation virtually.

On the second day of the 13th SeaBRnet Meeting and International Conference, Elvira and Fachri presented the Waterbender Team's result of water resilience in Sembalun District. Joined online from the Netherlands is Sabrina, from Thailand is Rosyad, and from Bali is Sena. In conclusion, Waterbender successfully presented their problem identification, ideas and solutions for water resiliency in Sembalun. They concluded that the offered solutions would make Sembalun, as a part of Rinjani-Lombok Biosphere Reserve and UNESCO Global Geopark, water resilient in food, living, and safety for 2030 and beyond, as well as conserve the area as a biosphere reserve.

We were so proud to see the Waterbender Team on International Stage. Again, congratulation for Sembalun Team!

The UNESCO Water Resilience Challenge 2021: the conclusion

The Water Agency would like to appreciate the following organizations and people as the completion of this Challenge could not have been possible without their assistance and support.

First and foremost, thanks to the UNESCO Jakarta for the opportunity to collaborate on a youth engagement program on one of the Biosphere Reserves Sites and for the chance to present and speak at the 13th SeaBRnet Meeting and International Conference 2021.

Many thanks to our partners and experts: Mohamed Djelid as The Director and Representative UNESCO Jakarta Office; Hans Dencker Thulstrup from UNESCO Jakarta; Adhe Lignita Wulandari from UNESCO Jakarta; Rien Dam as a representative of Water NL; Prof Y. Purwanto from Indonesia MAB National Committee under BRIN; M. Farid Zaini from RLUGGp Management Agency; Meliawati from RLUGGp Management Agency; and our local partner, Baiq Sri Mulya from Destination Management Organization (DMO) Sembalun. Thank you for all the knowledge and experiences that you have shared with the participants during this Challenge.

We also would like to express our gratitude to all the mentors: Gracia Plenita Agnindhira from AWS Indonesia; Ari Mochamad, Selamer Daroyni, Suryani Amin, and Happy Tiara, from ICLEI Indonesia; Guido van Hofwegen from Nazava; Thijs de Klein from Resilience BV; Ardzuna Sinaga, Vallin Tsarina, Yugo Phurbojoyo, and Wagiono Bustami from Urban+ Institute. Thank you for all of your dedication in mentoring and supporting the UWRC 2021 teams for the past 1,5 months. We believe the participants learn a lot from you and look up to you as one of their inspirational people.

Finally, we would like to express our most profound appreciation to all the teams: CAWS, Ez Yoke, Nirvana, Sembalun, and Waterbender. Thank you for all of your time, efforts, and dedication during the Challenge. We hope you can gain new experiences, knowledge, connections, and friendship through this Challenge..

We will see you next year! 


Written by: Tri Octiviani (The Water Agency)