mIoT partner with charity Books in Homes to celebrate First Nations people’s water knowledge for National Water Week

Leilani Johansen - October 17, 2021

Each October, the Australian Water Association organises National Water Week, making a splash across Australia by inspiring communities and organisations to build awareness around the value of water.

As an active member of the Australian water sector and to celebrate National Water Week, Brisbane-based IoT technology company mIoT has partnered with the charitable foundation for Books in Homes Australia to distribute book packs through their school network.

This year’s National Water Week theme is Caring for water and Country, which recognises First Nations people’s longstanding knowledge of protecting and sustaining Australia’s water and lands for over 65,000 years.

mIoT operate heavily within the Australian water sector, providing IoT data loggers to some of Australia’s largest water utilities, which allow for comprehensive and reliable monitoring of their water networks, detecting and preventing leaks and overflows, and subsequently saving water.

“One of our key values is sustainability, and we have a genuine commitment to long-term sustainability. We believe early education on where water comes from is directly related to life-long water-saving habits” explains mIoT Chief Technology Officer Freddie Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen.

“And what better organisation to partner with than Books in Homes whose mission is to provide reading resources to socio-educationally disadvantaged children living in urban, rural or remote communities.

“All of the children’s books included in our National Water Week donated packs were chosen for their water theme and embed a First Nation’s perspective—either having been written or illustrated by Indigenous authors and artists”.

Some of the titles included in the National Water Week book packs donated by mIoT are River, Coming Home to Country, and Wilam, A Birrarung Story. Five book packs have been distributed through Books in Homes’ network, reaching children in remote communities that have little or no access to books and learning resources.

The five schools that received the pack include Dajarra State School, which is situated in outback Queensland. Water is so scarce in Dajarra that non potable water has to be brought into town by tanker once a week. The Council also supplies eight litres of drinking water per household per day. Another school is Bulla Camp School in remote NT, situated along a river which is a life source for the local community. The three other schools are East Kalgoorlie Primary School in the outback goldfields region of Western Australia, Brungle Public School in regional New South Wales, and Kaurna Plains School in Adelaide, SA. Indigenous student enrolment is between 92% to 100% in these five schools.

National Water Week

Children at Kaurna Plains School reading some of the NWW book pack titles.

Founded in 2001, Books in Homes has provided more than 2.7 million books to Australian children. Books in Homes raises funds and seeks sponsors to support primary schools, preschools and childcare centres that could be described as having an Index of Community Socio-Educational Advantage (ICSEA) under the national average of 1000; and includes those that are located in socio-disadvantaged areas, are regionally remote or Indigenous communities; or having a student demographic represented by language backgrounds other than English.

“The Books in Homes team is delighted to partner with mIoT in this innovative National Water Week initiative,” says Peter Large, CEO. “Many of the schools on our Programs are located in areas where books can be as scarce as water can be. The schools in these regions recognise the value of books both on site in libraries and in the home, especially those titles included in the mIoT book packs that honour Indigenous culture and connection to land, water and Country.”

Moreover, this isn’t mIoT’s first venture in helping to provide educational resources to Australian kids, with their range of Captis data loggers being used in schools across Victoria for an interactive water monitoring program.

“We’ve been fortunate enough to be able to provide our data loggers to school water efficiency programs in Victoria which allow teachers and kids to monitor their own school’s water usage in a fun and interactive way,” Freddie Jansen van Nieuwenhuizen said.

“It’s definitely something we’d love to see other water utilities take up and implement around the country.”

This year, National Water Week is celebrated from the 18th-24th of October. To learn more and to see how National Water Week is being celebrated across the country, search the hashtag #NWW2021 on social media.

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