Local student aces Cayman Water World Water Day poetry contest

Rhea Swaminathan, winner of Cayman Water's poetry contest, shakes hands with Manuel Thomaz, the general manager of Cayman Water.

Water is not just a building block of life and a precious natural resource.

In this case, it has also served as an inspiration for Cayman’s best students.

Rhea Swaminathan, a fifth-grade student at Cayman International School, was recently chosen as the winner of Cayman Water’s World Water Day Student Poetry Competition.

That contest – built to recognise both World Water Day (March 22) and World Poetry Day (March 21) – invited West Bay students to wax poetic about the importance of water.

Swaminathan’s poem, entitled ‘Water,’ was chosen from 15 entries by a panel of three judges that included a Cayman Water representative, an English teacher from First Baptist Christian School and an emissary from Cayman’s Literacy Is For Everyone (LIFE) programme.

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‘Water From the Pond’ by Kylah Murphy, a 10-year-old student at CIS, and ‘Water – A Blessing’ by Dezira Tatum, a 10-year-old at Wesleyan Christian Academy, were chosen as runners-up.

World Water Day, an annual United Nations observance day, is centred on people in developing countries this year, and the theme for this year is ‘Leaving no one behind.’

The World Health Organisation and UNICEF have noted that 2.1 billion people live without safe water at home, and UNICEF data suggests that more than 700 children age five or younger die each day due to diarrhoea linked to unsafe water and poor sanitation.

Swaminathan’s winning entry touched on biology, noting that “65% water you are” as part of your body composition. Her poem also noted the distinct difficulty that people in impoverished environments have in locating clean water, and the importance of working together to conserve the water table.

Rhea Swaminathan, the winner of Cayman Water’s poetry contest, pictured in front of a beautiful waterfall.

Cayman Water will donate CI$500 to CIS for the winning effort and will provide a plant tour to Swaminathan’s class. The winning poem will be published in a Cayman Water advertisement in the Cayman Compass on Friday, and will be featured in the Consolidated Water 2019 annual report.

“We believe our mission to engage the community in thinking more about their water supply and especially about others in need of a clean supply, has been accomplished,” said Karlene Singh, a project engineer in business development for Cayman Water.

“We believe that if our children grow up with an understanding and appreciation of these things, they will be more conservation-minded as well as compassionate to their neighbours in need.”

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