small_waterfall_small"Wings for Water" will be the theme of a multistakeholder dialogue on water cooperation that the Dutch government will be hosting in the historical Peace Palace in The Hague on March 21st. This dialogue will be held in connection with the official celebration of World Water Day 2013 on March 22 that will bring together high-level representatives of the United Nations, civil society organisations, young people, government and business to discuss the importance of water cooperation for peace and sustainable development. 

The Soetendorp Institute is contributing to the Wings for Water event by facilitating the participation of spiritual and indigenous leaders in the dialogue. It may be the case that this is the first time that spiritual leaders are being involved in the UN-led process on the Millennium Development Goals at such a high level, and the successful interreligious activities in preparation of the Rio + 20 Conference have contributed in strong measure to this breakthrough. 

"Wings for Water" is the third in a series of highly successful events that the Soetendorp Institute co-organized in collaboration with Inner Sense and other Dutch partner organizations. In May 2012, "Wings for Rio + 20" inspired and gave wings to the Rio + 20 preparations by bringing together leaders from religion, business, government and youth and formulating the interreligious statement "Towards Rio + 20 and Beyond" that then was endorsed by over 200 religious and spiritual leaders. 

In September 2012, the "Wings for Earth Charter" event in Amsterdam empowered youth-led Earth Charter activities by supporting Thumbs Up Africa. With "Wings for Water", the success story of these events will be continued. As the title suggests, the event is expected to spark, inspire and give wings to the global dialogue process about a new international target on water.  

As the 2015 target date for achieving the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) approaches, there are a growing number of processes and debates on what a post-2015 agenda and framework for international development will look like. Water is a central theme for these discussions that are expected to lead to the formulation of new "sustainable development goals" that would replace the MDGs after their target year of 2015. 

The Soetendorp Institute is currently helping to prepare a Wake Up Call on Water Collaboration and is framing a thematic focus paper on water from an ethical perspective based on exisiting declarations and documents. We also started to prepare an inspirational booklet which would include words of wisdom on living water from our religious and spiritual traditions. 

Please help us prepare these publications, especially by sending to us statements, quotations and passages from our holy texts and scriptures on the sanctity of water and relevant documents on the need to provide universal access to uncontaminated water for all. Please send your contributions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. 

Please also join the ‘Prioritising Water' consultation that brings together international experts from various fields to pool their knowledge on the role of water in the Post-2015 development agenda.

The Soetendorp Institute


Jacob Soetendorp Institute for Human Values
Van Wijngaerdenstraat 21
2596 TW The Hague
The Netherlands