Truly Eye-Opening and Fun Time for Students - Learning the importance of Freshwater Ecosystem | WWF Malaysia

Truly Eye-Opening and Fun Time for Students - Learning the importance of Freshwater Ecosystem



Posted on 12 November 2013
At Sungai Selangor Dam
© WWF - Malaysia/Carell Cheong
12 Nov 2013, Petaling Jaya: Thirty-six students recently had an eye-opening experience when they took part in a two-day freshwater ecosystem field trip to Hulu Selangor, Sekinchan and Kuala Selangor, organized by WWF-Malaysia.

The 15-year-olds, accompanied by four teachers, were from SMK Kuala Kubu Bharu and SMK Ampang Pecah in Hulu Selangor District.

The field trip was part of the three-year “Protect Our Water, Protect Our Lives” project that is being funded by Coca-Cola Malaysia, in line with the company’s water stewardship goals and initiatives.

The first station the group visited was the Sungai Selangor Dam, where SPLASH1  officers briefed them on the functions of the dam, the rivers that flow into it, and the areas where it supplies water to. At the Rasa Water Treatment Plant, LUAS2  officers shared with them how raw water is treated and supplied to domestic and commercial users. At the Sekinchan main irrigational canal, the group was briefed by IADA3  officers on the importance of water to padi planting, the functions of regulators along the main canal, how liquid manure is sprayed onto the field, among others.

In the evening, the students and teachers had an amazing time sighting fireflies in Kampung Kuantan, Kuala Selangor. The briefing and video show by Kuala Selangor Municipal Council officers helped the students to learn about the insect’s lifecycle , its habitat, sexual differences, the enzyme luciferin that triggers the light on the distal end of its abdomen, and its function.

At each site, the students had to answer a set of custom-made questions. “The aim was to ensure that they pay attention during the briefings at each of the stations. This exercise helped them to gain information and become more aware of the importance of water and the environment to everyday life,” said WWF-Malaysia’s Manager for Environmental Education, A. Lasal.

“Through the “Protect Our Water, Protect Our Lives” project, we hope to raise awareness of students and teachers in the country on water-related issues such as quality, sources, treatment processes, management and conservation efforts. The end-in-mind is the schools will initiate water-related conservation efforts,” said WWF-Malaysia’s Head of Environmental Education, Thiagarajan Nadeson.

Over the three-year period which will end this year, WWF-Malaysia, through its school visit programmes, have exposed some 15,800 students from 76 primary and secondary schools in Kedah, Pahang, Penang, Selangor and Terengganu on the importance of water conservation.

“The field trip was very interesting, and made me aware of the importance of freshwater and its ecosystem. When we visited the padi field in Sekinchan, we were told that the main source of water for padi planting was from Sungai Bernam and Sungai Tengi. This made me realized how important water is to our economy. We were also told that fireflies are categorized as endangered insects, and fireflies are beatles, and not flies. We need to play our part in conserving the environment they live in so that they will not go extinct,” said Nur Afiqah Binti Ahmad Tajudin of SMK Ampang Pecah. “I enjoyed myself tremendously. This is the first time I have taken part in such a field trip,” Afiqah added.

“It was an insightful trip for me and made me more aware of the need to take care of the environment, especially water. I learned how difficult and costly it is to treat water that has suspended materials and impurities. When we went to Kampung Kuantan, I was truly amazed by the beauty of the fireflies. We really need to protect these endangered insects, otherwise the future generation will never have the opportunity to witness the beauty of nature, said Chia Man Yong of SMK Kuala Kubu Bharu.

“WWF-Malaysia is grateful to Coca-Cola for their contribution to our conservation work, particularly when the project reaches out to the younger generation, in whom we need to inculcate the importance of conserving the environment for now and the future,” said Nadeson.

The Coca-Cola Company and WWF launched a transformational partnership in 2007 to help conserve the world’s freshwater resources to help address the natural resource challenges that impact fresh water.

“Water is critical to sustaining nature, communities and businesses. WWF and The Coca-Cola Company have combined our capabilities to conserve and protect freshwater resources around the world. This project in Malaysia is part of our commitment to the Company’s global water stewardship plan, which aims to improve water usage efficiency, recycle water used in our operations and replenish the water we use through community water access and watershed restoration and protection,” said Coca-Cola Malaysia’s Director of Public Affairs and Communications, Encik Mohd Kadri Mohd Taib.
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1
Syarikat Pengeluar Air Sungai Selangor Sdn Bhd
2 Lembaga Urus Air Selangor
3 Integrated Agriculture Development Authority


For further information:
Yeoh Lin Lin, Head of Communications, WWF-Malaysia
Tel: +603-78033772 ext 6106 Email: llyeoh@wwf.org.my
At Sungai Selangor Dam
© WWF - Malaysia/Carell Cheong Enlarge
At Sekinchan padi field
© WWF - Malaysia/Carell Cheong Enlarge