Millennial Way to Sustainable Development Goals
I had a chance join Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) Youth as a Network Coordinator since July 2017. SDSN Youth is a platform launched by former UN Secretary General, Ban Ki Moon, to empower youth globally to create sustainable development solutions. SDSN Youth follows the UNDP’s Youth Strategy Approach in defining youth, therefore focusing on both young people aged 15-24 and young adults aged 25-30 or even beyond according to regional contexts and based on specific issues (e.g. unemployment, education, political inclusion). My predecessors are Tasya Kamila (2015-2016) and Ilman Dzikri (2016-2017).
During, Ilman’s leadership, he gathered 30 youth-led organizations to join SDSN Youth membership. These organizations is a powerful resources for SDSN Youth to achieve SDGs. Sustainable development become urgent because current development that meets the needs of the present should not compromising the ability of the future generations to meet their own needs.
The SDSN Youth have a unique criteria that makes it different with other global platform, they are:
- Knowledge – SDSN Youth backs its activities with research and expertise issued by SDSN Thematic Groups.
- Accountability – Working closely with the leadership of SDSN ensures that SDSN Youth projects uphold the values of the network.
- Networks – By being a part of an extensive global network, SDSN Youth have the ability to draw on connections to expand into regions that other youth organizations might find difficult.
- Multifaceted approach – SDSN Youth focuses on multifaceted and integrated approaches to sustainable development.
- Credibility – the UN brand adds great value to SDSN Youth by providing a greater opportunity for engaging and cooperating with the UN family of agencies as well as other prominent groups.
During my leadership, I tried to gather those members offline. Together with SDSN Southeast Asia and Indonesia, we held “SDSN Youth Meet Up #1” on September 26, 2017. About 18 organizations from 30 members joined the meeting. We took advantages of the meeting to remind them all about the importance of SDSN Youth platform.
As an introduction, Mrs. Mari Elka Pangestu, known as former Ministry of Tourism of Republic of Indonesia, and now as a President of United in Diversity Foundation and Leadership Council of SDSN Southeast Asia and Indonesia, presented the history of SDSN in Indonesia. She noted that sustainable development became urgent and everyone should take an action. She agreed that collaboration is the key success to achieve SDGs. Mrs. Cokorda Istri Dewi, also from United in Diversity and SDSN Southeast Asia, added SDSN Southeast Asia and Indonesia program plan for 2016-2020 period. In general, they will have a program on SDGs localization and action dialogue forum, SDSN Youth network & development, encouraging & nurturing the Sustainable Oriented Solutions (SOS), and mainstreaming SDGs to the society & business sector.
Then, I had a chance to present the SDSN Youth. The SDSN Youth itself have at least three main goals to involve youth, they are:
- Educate young people about the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and encourage them to prioritize their implementation. We have plan to conduct these program in a year ahead:a. #KnowYourGoals Campaignb. SDG Pyramid to Happiness Actionc. Global School
d. SDG Academy (adding new approaches from our ideas: GRI Report Training for NGO and Executive Program on Sustainability Communication)
- Integrate concerns and views of young people into the pathways for achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). We also want to amplify local initiatives in advocacy level through ‘Local Pathways’ program.
- Initiate and support projects that are aimed towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Our program to achieve this goal through offline/online meeting, ‘Youth Dialogue Studio’ event, and ‘Youth Action Forum’, that will be held later this October.
As the first step of collaboration, during the meeting we had a little workshop to mapping member’s activity towards SDGs thematic goals. From 17 goals of SDGs, we have members working on goals number 1 (No Poverty), number 2 (Zero Hunger), number 3 (Good Health and Well-Being), number 4 (Quality Education), number 5 (Gender Equality), number 10 (Reduced Inequalities), number 11 (Sustainable Cities and Communities), number 12 (Responsible Consumption and Production), number 13 (Climate Action), number 16 (Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions), and number 17 (Partnership for the Goals). We missed organizations to complete the SDG Pyramid (if you curious about this, please click this link, this is an awesome tool to understand SDGs) in number 6 (Clean Water and Sanitation), number 7 (Affordable and Clean Energy), number 8 (Decent Work and Economic Growth), number 9 (Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure), number 14 (Life Below Water), and number 15 (Life on Land). In total, we have 11 goals to achieve, and missed 6 more goals. This is challenge for us to complete all 17 goals, led by youth.
From 18 organizations attending the meeting, in majority, they worked on goals number 3 (Good Health and Well-Being), number 4 (Quality Education), number 16 (Peace, Justice, and Strong Institutions), and number 17 (Partnership for the Goals). Experiencing world cafe method, they shared stories each other about the goals. Those stories and ideas must be followed up by real action!
The first meeting was great and we looked forward for future collaboration. Upcoming meetings are on scheduled and the spirits of youth is going bigger. Together, we left no one behind.