One of the most innovative and revolutionary ideas to come out of the 20th century is the creation and adoption of ‘sustainable development. At its heart, Sustainable Development is a movement that focuses on solving current problems; while being mindful of the future. Our responsibility is to take care of what is now harming our planet and people without causing more issues for future generations.
There is an unfortunate narrative that the world is worse than it was in the past. This idea couldn’t be further from the truth, and while more could be done, there has been a lot of positive change. A few areas where positive change has occurred are :
- Global poverty: the amount of people living on less than $2 a day has fallen from 1.9 billion in 1990 to 736 million in 2015
- World Hunger: the amount of starving people has decreased by over 50% between the years 2000 and 2017
- Life Expectancy: the life expectancy of people in poorer continents such as Africa, Asia, and South America has increased by over 33%
This change is primarily attributed to the United Nations and its relentless pursuit of creating a brighter and better future. During the Earth Summit in Brazil in 1992, over 175 countries adopted the movement and policies of Agenda 21. The Agenda 21 movement sought to establish an ongoing partnership for the world that focused on sustainable development. At the time, the primary areas were protecting human lives and the environment; however, Sustainable Development has since expanded into areas such as protecting human rights and equality.
Fast forward to 2015, and a worldwide initiative has begun to bring urgent attention and action to various areas. This initiative is known as the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. And has given rise to what is known as the 17 SDGs, or the 17 Sustainable Development Goals.
- No Poverty
- Zero Hunger
- Good Health & Well-being
- Quality Education
- Gender Equality
- Clean Water and Sanitation
- Affordable & Clean Energy
- Decent Work & Economic Growth
- Industry, Innovation & Infrastructure
- Reduced Inequalities
- Sustainable Cities & Communities
- Responsible Consumption & Production
- Climate Action
- Life Below Water
- Life on Land
- Peace, Justice & Strong Institutions
- Partnerships for the Goals
The 17 SDGs comprise a wide variety of areas that cover not only the protection of human life and the environment but many other areas, including the lives and rights of animals and various other places of interest such as education, equality, and energy consumption.
The inclusion of so many countries and governing authorities may leave you feeling overwhelmed. You might also find yourself saying Waoh! But have no fear, as the team is here to help with some quick tips on how you can get involved.
We only encourage donations when it is reasonable to do so. You must take care of yourself, but if you have anything spare, even a few dollars can go a long way. There are a variety of organisations that are directly contributing to the success of the 2030 Agenda. Companies like Business for Good provide a reliable and efficient way to make an impact as they take the guesswork out of donating.
If you cannot donate money, your time is just as, if not more important. There are countless worldwide organisations available for volunteers to be involved. However, local volunteering is also just as important and is largely overlooked. A few hours a week could be the difference between someone surviving and thriving. You have a lot of value to offer, so we recommend sharing it with the world.
Contributing to Waoh!
In the spirit of providing value, the team feels obliged to express the need for a centralised network of knowledge sharing. If you are contributing to the SDGs and have knowledge and value to share, we encourage you to create an account on Waoh and share this with the world. By sharing your experiences and knowledge with others, you can create a ripple effect that will change the world! If that doesn’t make you say Waoh, then we don’t know what will.
Our actions are improving, but we can always do better. Through the adoption of shared collectives like the 2030 Agenda and the 17 SDGs, we are on the right track to making the necessary changes. However, by sharing our knowledge and value, we can, in essence, create a snowball effect that helps to streamline positive change. So, share the importance of these causes with anyone who will listen and appreciate everything you have.