Why RAiN Forum:
Bangladesh is now experiencing acute shortage of freshwater round the year particularly in both urban and coastal areas. In urban areas, water table is declining day by day due to extraction of groundwater to meet the ever increasing demand of drinking water. Besides, recharging of groundwater is overlooked. In addition,
the presence of high salinity in surface and groundwater in the coastal areas restricted the development of a dependable water supply system. In such cases, alternative source of water such as harvesting rainwater and in some cases recycling and reusing wastewater can substantially increase the water availability where supplies are scarce and offer economical and ecological benefits. To meet the increasing demand of drinking water, Rain Water Harvesting can be an alternative as well as additional source of fresh drinking water for using both drinking and other purposes.
In 2010 WaterAid, Bangladesh (WAB) organized a four days training program on "Urban Rainwater Harvesting System" at SAVAR, Dhaka, Bangladesh in collaboration with the Center for Science and Environment (CSE), India. A number of professionals including Academicians, Architects, Civil Engineers, Environmental Consultants, Lawyers, Urban Planners, Government and NGO Officials from different institutions of Bangladesh attended that training program with an intention of learning about the theory, practice and policies of Rainwater Harvesting. The training provided an excellent opportunity to all the participants a window of learning from the experiences of technical experts of India as well as the officials, academicians and civil society members from Bangladesh who have experienced and implemented the similar project in the country. In the training program, all the participants came to know that those who are working on water harvesting and relevant projects, are working separately in their own capacity. Very often there is no integration among all the professionals and people in the society concerned to such projects implemented in the country. In the experience sharing ceremony, they highly uttered the necessity of integration through a holistic approach among all the professionals from academicians to government officers, from architects to engineers, from planners to policy makers which is needed for successfully working and implementing such projects. Considering all these, all the participants decided to form a platform which will be integrating and bringing up all the professionals and interested civil society members for promoting and raising awareness for rainwater harvesting successfully as an alternative and additional source of water supply to face the challenge of present water shortages in Bangladesh. That's why the RAiN (Resource Available in Nauture) Forum is formed.