Engaging with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

Sama has been a part of various processes from the finalization of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the subsequent identification of indicators and monitoring the work towards those goals at both the global as well as national levels. Prior to the SDGs being finalized, Sama participated in the processes facilitated by UN agencies with the goal of informing indicators particularly with regard to gender equality (Goal 5). At the national level, we, at Sama have been a part of different alliances and networks for advocacy and strategizing to gather and disseminate information and ensure systematic monitoring, particularly related to Goal 3 and 5. We continue to be a part of these networks and alliances to ensure continued systematic monitoring of SDGs. Also, at the Asia and global level Sama has had continued engagement with Goal 3 and 5 (good health and well-being, and gender equality, respectively) and 17 at multiple platforms including the Health Action International (HAI) and the Prince Mahidol Award Conferences (PMAC).

In March 2017, Sama participated in a Youth Forum organized by ARROW and Youth Lead for the Asia Pacific region, in the run up to the Asia-Pacific Forum for Sustainable Development (APFSD) at Bangkok, Thailand. We specifically contributed to the critical engagement with Goal 3 and Goal 5 at the Forum, with an emphasis on young girls’ and women’s right to health. Participants of this important Forum prepared a Asia-Pacific Youth Call to Action on Sustainable Solutions to Eradicate Poverty & Promote Prosperity that was presented at the Civil Society platforms of the APFSD. The Call to Action emphasizes an “intersectional analysis and participatory approach” in moving towards the achievement of the targets under the SDGs. It emphasizes the “interlinked and integrated nature of the goals” with sensitivity to marginalized and vulnerable groups – including “young people and women who are poor, people of diverse sexual orientation and gender identities and expressions, people with all forms of disability, people living with and affected by HIV, ethnic minorities and indigenous peoples, people living in remote, rural and slum areas, sex workers, people who use drugs, migrants, displaced, refugees, and stateless people, people with limited formal education, people of all castes and class, and religious minorities”.

On 31 May 2017, Sama participated in the National Consultation on SDGs through a Gender Lens at Chandigarh. We contributed to the discussions on targets and national indicators under Goal 3. Our focus has been on a gendered analysis of the approach adopted in proposing the national indicators under this goal to identify the gaps and challenges in order to arrive at a way forward. The recommendations from this process would be instrumental in preparing civil society shadow report viz. India’s participation in the Voluntary National Review (VNR) of moving towards the SDGs in 2017. Participants in this consultation included women’s rights activists, academics, members of civil society organizations, representatives of NITI Aayog, UN Women, UN Resident Commissioner’s Office and UNDP, among others.

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