Saving water to protect our precious environment will be the central message of free education sessions for primary schools across Kent.

Schools are being invited to sign up now for the free outdoor education sessions in a new programme called ‘Our River, Our Water’. The education programme is a partnership between Southern Water, the South East Rivers Trust (SERT) and Wessex Rivers Trust (WRT) – two charities which work to ensure all life can thrive in and around rivers.

The White Cliffs Countryside Partnership is delivering sessions locally for SERT on the River Dour, a beautiful chalk stream that provides the perfect setting to inspire children.

The national curriculum linked sessions will highlight that the south east of England is water-stressed. The area has less rainfall each year, yet demand for water is increasing, as the population grows and the climate continues to change.

Pupils will learn that the water we use in our daily lives is taken from the local environment, which leaves less water for our vital river habitats.  Through the sessions, children will learn to appreciate the value of our rivers, how to save water and engage with our river wildlife in a fun and hands-on way.

River dipping

Classes will take part in a range of outdoor activities including river dipping, all linked to Key Stage 1 and 2 modules. Pupils will receive follow-up resources for the classroom and a leaflet to take home so they can share their learnings there too. 

Hester Liakos, CEO of the South East Rivers Trust, said: “We are delighted to work with Southern Water to deliver ‘Our River, Our Water’. Our experienced educators are looking forward to helping pupils investigate river habitats and inspiring them to understand and prevent low water flows in rivers, which impacts both wildlife and humans.

“Now, more than ever, it is crucial we get young people outside and reconnecting with nature and that is what this programme is all about. It’s great to be working with our neighbouring rivers trusts and Southern Water to inspire the next generation of river guardians.”

Justine Lewis, Water Efficiency Officer at Southern Water, said: “Southern Water is excited about launching this new and exciting school education programme with the Rivers Trust within Hampshire. We are supporting the Our River, Our Water campaign and asking children to think about and look after where their water comes from.” 

To book or enquire about sessions on the River Dour, running from September 2022, email the White Cliffs Countryside Partnership at

For more information about the Our River, Our Water campaign, visit the Southern Water website.

By Ed

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