Sustainable development goals or SDGs were announced to set actions onward for holistic world progress. They were first announced on September 25, 2015, United Nations General Assembly in New York. The world leaders adopted them starting January 1, 2016. It has 17 goals and is to be achieved by the end in 2030. But achieving the goals is possible only when roles of youth and SDGs are aligned. And this International Youth Day, we are discussing few SDGs where youth can get involved.
SDGs 2030 aims to alleviate problems like world hunger, illiteracy, and poverty to prevail peace, security, and prosperity across the world. The vision was to safeguard people and make this planet a better place for future generations. Nations across the world have taken the responsibility to achieve them but the youth of those nations have more important roles. If you are youth and SDGs are your interest-of-work, learn where they come together, and how you can be a part of it:
SDG no 3: Good health and well-being
- End diseases like AIDS, tuberculosis, malaria, hepatitis, and other water-borne and communicable diseases
- Prevent substance abuse, like narcotic drug abuse and harmful use of alcohol
- Reduce the number of global deaths and injuries occurred due to road traffic accidents
- Ensure equal access to sexual as well as reproductive health-care services, such as family planning, and integration in national strategies & programs
Youths can contribute to this goal by gaining an education about diseases and how to combat them. Also about drug and alcohol abuse. Only when the youths are aware can they ever really contribute to progress. If every youth is responsible about themselves, the health problem we see today will significantly decrease. Consequently, the contribution has an effect on other goals listed as well.
SDG no 4: Quality education
- Ensure all girls and boys get completely free, equitable and quality primary and secondary education leading to relevant and effective learning outcomes
- Ensure equal access to affordable and qualitative technical, vocational, and tertiary education, up to university level
- Build or upgrade educational facilities that are child, disability and gender sensitive in safe, non-violent, inclusive and effective learning environments for all
- Ensure that all youth and adult of substantial proportions, both men and women, achieve literacy and numeracy
- Increase number of people who have technical and vocational skills, for employment, or entrepreneurship
Youth who are educated themselves can get directly involved by taking up the responsibility of another individual to teach. Educated youth can create an environment where gender roles and gender gaps are dismissed while promoting gender equality. Opportunities for quality education increase literacy rates in all countries and it will give employment opportunities, decent jobs, and entrepreneurship skills to everyone.
SDG no 5: Gender equality
- End all forms of gender-based discrimination against women in the world
- Enhance the use of technical resources or ICT to promote women empowerment
- Eliminate all harmful practices, like a child, early and forced marriage and female genital mutilation
- End all forms of violence against all women and girls in the public and private spheres, including trafficking and sexual and other types of exploitation
- Adopt and enforce proper policies and law enforceable legislation to promote gender equality and the empowerment of all women and girls at all levels
Youth, both men & women, when aware will help to alleviate every type of discrimination of gender-based biases and stereotypes. They also will help end any type of gender-based violence. Empowered youth and SDGs together mean that both sexes are have their say and participation in the policy-making level too.
SDGs no 7: Affordable and clean energy
- Expand infrastructure and upgrade technology for new and sustainable energy for all
- Enhance international cooperation for clean energy research and technology
- Double the global rate of improvement in energy efficiency for all
- Ensure access to affordable, reliable and sustainable energy services for all
- Increase renewable energy in the global energy mix substantially
Humans have already overused the Earth’s resources and fuel, causing harm to our climate. But educated youth are the future of tomorrow and they can come up with alternative ideas to fossil fuels like hydropower, windmill and solar power.
SDGs no 11: Sustainable cities and communities
- Provide universal access to safe, like green and public spaces for all
- Support least developed countries, through financial and technical assistance, in building sustainable and resilient buildings utilizing local materials
- Strengthen the efforts to protect and safeguard the world’s cultural and natural heritage
- Reduce the adverse per capita environmental impact of cities
- Ensure enough access to safe and affordable housing and basic services and upgrade slums for all
Youth or the young and capable manpower can help build a green and safe environment especially for women and elderly people. Youth and SDGs is the way to maintain the now existing waste materials, help build a better community for humanity that is clean and sustainable.
SDGs no 16: Peace justice and strong institution
- End all forms of abuse, exploitation, trafficking and violence against children
- Ensure responsive, inclusive, participatory and representative decision-making process at all levels
- Provide legal identity for all, such as birth registration
- Ensure the provision of information about public access
- Develop effective, accountable and transparent institutions around the globe, at all levels
Youth are the future, which means working with youth and SDGs is the way to safeguard peace, sustain justice, and upgrade the lifestyles. Aware youth also means that they can establish strong work ethics, institutional values and setup. Such strong institutions can work with one another creating a synergy within and beyond the organizations, for overall peace and progress.
We still have time to achieve the SDGs 2030. But to achieve them we have to work today, with skilled and capable young manpower. Youth and SDGs will be our best shot to achieve and instill overall development plans, reduce future economic, environmental and social costs, strengthen economic competitiveness and reduce poverty significantly.
So join hands, come forward and make yourself as well as the community and the world you are living in a better place.