We are delighted that several of the WCIA programmes are recognized as making a positive contribution towards the Sustainable Development Goals says Susie Ventris- Field WCIA CEO.
The Sustainable Development Goals, set after much consultation and based on the experience of the Millennium Goals, set out a vision for the future where lives are transformed and the planet protected. Governments are accountable for their progress and it is the UK Government turn to submit its Voluntary National Review.The report is detailed and covers each of the 17 interlinked Goals. It includes a devolved perspective as well as balancing domestic and international actions.
WCIA is delighted that some of our programmes are highlighted as making a contribution towards achieving those Goals. The Peace School Scheme, which aims to improve the quality of education (Goal 4) and promote peace (Goal 16) by developing a culture of peace based on human rights and non-violent problem-solving in schools and their local communities. The report states, “ The project has reduced records of negative behaviour; increased involvement in pupil voice (up 300%); increased engagement in assemblies; and social action taken in the community.” The Changemakers project, delivered with Oxfam Cymru in high schools across Wales, which develops global citizenship skills was noted for its contribution towards quality education. The collaborative project, working with Size of Wales, delivering regional schools Mock UN COP conferences on climate change, encouraging and inspiring climate champions was also cited for supporting Goal 13 – Climate Action.
The VNR report, has been criticized for not including the voices of the more vulnerable. It is also however, largely a mapping exercise of what is currently being done. “The UK VNR misses the chance to set out a UK action plan on how to reach these global goals.” Says CEO Susie Ventris-Field. There are some concerns about the report; more analysis and synthesis could have been done. The UK still has no clear and focused plan on how to achieve the ambitions of the SDGs. The data used is selective and at times contradictory from one section to the other. The UK Government needs to link up policy on trade, energy and consumption with the need to achieve the Goals. High level commitment to these Goals seems to be missing and once this report has been presented to the UN, that’s not the end of the process. WCIA will continue to take a lead in Wales to encourage the UK to develop its international commitment to the Goals.