6 Young Women Leading SDG Action
There were more than 140 countries represented in the UN SDG Global Festival of Action and 60% of the participants were female! Meet six young women that are leading the festival, their future and the future of their communities.
“My enthusiasm is what makes me go further. I’m dedicated, I have a positive perspective on life and I’m trying to make sure it becomes a reality”
Alia is from Egypt and she is working with the UN World Food Program. In the UN SDG Global Festival of Action, she was representing the project WFP Storytellers, that received an Honorable Mention in the SDG Awards. The WFP Storytellers tries to give digital skills training to people on the ground: “We give them cameras, photography and videography training and we encourage them to tell their own stories. Sometimes people are forgotten if we don’t see their story. I think it’s very important to make sure that everybody gets a chance to use their voice”.
Sumin Lim and Amy Nguyen
Sumin and Amy met at the festival. Sumin, in the left, is from South Corea and she is doing her master in Sustainable Development. That’s what made her apply to be a volunteer at the festival, and she made it. Amy is an intern with the UN SDG Action Campaign. She is German, with Vietnam origins, she lived in the UK for 5 years and she is going to Geneva to do a master’s degree. “I’m an example of diversity and unity”, she completes.
“As we can see, for example, with Fridays4Future, young people are far more aware of topics like climate justice than the rest of the society”
Clara is an activist part of the NGO Youpa, which implements education for sustainable development in Germany. By cooperating with the government of Germany, they intend to introduce the “young people’s perspective” in the implementing process. She’s really confident about the power of youths.
Rebecca came from Nigeria. She is a researcher and she wants to do her PhD about the effect of public policies on inequality and poverty. Her favourite Sustainable Development Goal is the 11, Sustainable cities and communities. She believes that “without stable and accessible housing, the framework for any progress to be made is impossible”. Rebecca analyzes what’s happening in the country she lives: “The fast urbanization in Lagos, Nigeria, is really affecting the poor people and creating more homeless people. The government, instead of providing housing, is demolishing slums and more people are ending up on the slums”.
Janice is the co-founder of a non-profit organization focused on mental health. She is working in the United States with schools, using technology to create awareness about mental issues with teachers and students. There are many preconceptions about mental health, she considers. “One of them is that people feel that if they don’t talk about it, it doesn’t exist”.
With their work, these women represent many others who are leading the way to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals. Whether activists, government representatives, private sector leaders or creatives, every participant at the Festival shared a story, a practical solution and/or a vision of how we can make the SDGs happen.
Meet also the most transformative and impactful SDG initiatives of the year, here.