New rain champions to accelerate the practice of urban rainwater harvesting

20 December 2022
International training on urban rainwater harvesting

International Training Network Centre of Bangladesh University of Engineering Technology (ITN-BUET) in association with WaterAid Bangladesh and International Water Association (IWA) Bangladesh organised 'International training and exposure visit on urban rainwater harvesting system' at ITN-BUET, Dhaka from 11-14 December 2022.

photo 1 from training
From 2nd right, Mr Mohammad Zobair Hasan, Dr Tanvir Ahmed, Mr Md Tahmidul Islam attended the inauguration ceremony as honourable guests.

This year’s training had participants from diverse backgrounds – including architects, engineers, industrialists, development practitioners, and academicians. Experts and professionals from the sector including ITN-BUET, WaterAid, RAiN Forum, University of Dhaka, and IWA facilitated different sessions covering a wide array of technical and cross-cutting topics. 

The participants got the opportunity to visit Mobil House, a Platinum LEED-certified commercial building who are practicing rainwater harvesting system. This exposure visit helped the participants to obtain a holistic view of the water management system including rainwater harvesting, wastewater treatment, and groundwater recharge in commercial buildings and how the system can be beneficial. It also contributed to bridge the gap between theoretical knowledge and real-life implementation of practicing rainwater harvesting system.

photo 3 from training
Photo collage captions: (A) Dr Tanvir Ahmed, Director, ITN-BUET highlighted the Industrial and urban water challenges in Bangladesh; (B) Mr Md Tahmidul Islam, Technical Advisor- WASH, WaterAid Bangladesh presented the principles of rainwater harvesting and its components; (C) Mr Md Azizur Rahman, Assistant Director (Research), ITN-BUET facilitated technical sessions on rainwater conveyance and plumbing system, storage and conditioning; (D) The conveyance and plumbing session was followed by a panel discussion where Mr Syed Azizul Haq, PEng, President, RAiN Forum further explained the plumbing system related to rainwater harvesting from his experiences over 30 years; (E) Mr Maharam Dakua Mithun, Chairman, Action for Sustainable Green Development (ASGD) facilitated a session on groundwater and artificial recharge along with water safety plan for RWH; (F) Dr Kazi Matin Uddin Ahmed, Professor, Department of Geology, University of Dhaka shared his experiences on managed aquifer recharge (MAR); (G) Mr Ashraful Alum Ratan, Secretary, RAiN Forum emphasised the benefits of practicing RWH in industrial buildings; (H) Ms Nowrin Mow, Programme Officer - Engineer, WaterAid Bangladesh facilitated technical sessions on operation and maintenance, and cost and return of rainwater harvesting system; (I) Mr Shimul Ghosh, Research Assistant, ITN-BUET presented his research on household rainwater harvesting systems in the southwestern coastal region of Bangladesh; (J) Dr Suresh Kumar Rohilla, Programme Lead, International Water Association (IWA) shared case studies of urban rainwater harvesting practices from India and around the world as part of the international experience sharing. (K) Participants during exposure visit at Mobil House.
photo 4 from training

The participants were tasked to complete a group assignment to reflect on their learnings from this training. Each team presented their work, and the best team was awarded after evaluation. At the end of this training, on 14 December 2022, the participants were introduced to networks like RAiN Forum, IWA Bangladesh, and WaterWomen to unite and build on their knowledge. Certificates were handed over to the participants by Dr Tanvir Ahmed, Professor, Department of Civil Engineering, Bangladesh University of Engineering and Technology (BUET) and Director, ITN-BUET, and Ms Hasin Jahan, Country Director, WaterAid Bangladesh.  

photo 5 from training

24 new rain champions emerged through the training who have committed to utilise their knowledge and skills in their respective fields for a better and sustainable tomorrow, where every drop of rainwater will be valued.