UNESCO Futures of Education Initiative:
Zero Water Day Partnership

Zero Water Day Partnership

The Zero Water Day Partnership encourages children from around the world to take action and address the climate crisis and its impact on environmental and human health.  

In 2021, Gunnison Middle and High School students joined schools from around the world to become agents of change, taking community action and protecting their mountain ecosystems. 

We are reimagining how learning can influence human and global systems through guided support and international collaboration from UNESCO's Futures of Education Initiative.  

Water Towers of the World

We live at the headwaters of the Gunnison River, a water tower of the world.  The water that flows from our mountains contributes to the Colorado River Basin and providing water for the southwestern United States and Mexico.  The Gunnison Watershed School District is honored to represent our region in this project

To learn more visit Gunnison River Basin.

Zero Water Day Project, 2023 

During the fall of 2022, GMS 7th graders took action on their local ecosystem by designing and planting a pollinator garden to increase biodiversity while conserving water.  

With the support of local environmental agencies, students were able to plant three native wildflower seed mixes.  If successful, their garden will educate and inspire Gunnison Valley residents to create their own drought-resistant pollinator gardens.

Pollinator gardens have also been started in collaboration with Mountain Roots Food Project at Gunnison High School.  

We hope to create a pollinator walk connecting the two schools and educating our community similar to the water walk at Van Tuyl. 

Step 1:

Completing a bioinventory of the existing plants and animals in our school ecosystem with guest ecologists

Step 2:

Mapping three different garden beds, reducing competition from existing "weeds" and preparing the soil to retain more moisture

Step 3:

Planting three types of native wildflower mixes using water conserving techniques 

Students represented Gunnison Schools on a global stage by participating in the University of Glasgow's Satellite Conference for COP26 in 2022 and the United Nation's Water Conference in 2023.

Gunnison Middle School students showing off their "Be a Water Hero" t-shirts from our host, the Upper Gunnison River Conservation District.  Students presented their pollinator garden project and shared their passions for the environment. 

Zero Water Day Project, 2022

Did you know that mountains are the water towers of the world?  The GMS Water Walk interpretive signs will guide you through the story of water in the Gunnison Valley while highlighting several of the UNESCO Sustainable Development goals.  

Our signs were designed and installed in 2022 by GMS 7th graders with the support of Gunnison High School students and local partnerships.

Step 1: 

Students planned locations for each interpretive sign along a municiple walking trail to the Gunnison River

Step 2: 

Students designed and installed six interpretive signs on a one-mile trail loop

Step 3:

Gunnison students, community members and visitors enjoy the signs in all seasons

Learn More

Cape Town Water Crisis, South Africa
Day Zero

World Water Crisis