MDG Advocates: Seize the Next 1,000 Days of the MDGs
New York, USA, 26 September 2012
“Achieving the MDGs is challenging but possible,” said Prime Minister Julia Gillard of Australia, co-chair of the MDG Advocacy Group. “We have seen what can be accomplished when the international community works together – we have made real progress towards the MDGs. But we still have a lot to do. And we are running out of time.” Co-chair and President of Rwanda Paul Kagame warned against losing focus following the recent global economic downturn, which has slowed progress towards the MDGs. “We need to be innovative and find ways to do more with limited resources, and scale up what has been seen to work over the last decade,” he said. “We must ensure the most vulnerable are not left behind.” The MDG Advocacy Group was established by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in 2010 to help him build political will and mobilize global action for the benefit of the poor and the most vulnerable. “This is no time to relax. 2015 is fast approaching,” Mr. Ban told the Group today. “We can and must continue to push as hard as we can to build on the momentum the Goals have generated.” Video interviews with members of the Group can be viewed here.
Appointment of Prime Minister Julia Gillard
Rio de Janeiro, 21 June 2012
United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has appointed Prime Minister Julia Gillard to co-chair a group of global leaders and celebrities making a "final push" for implementation of the millennium development goals by the target date of 2015. He said Ms Gillard's "vision, leadership and commitment" had caused him to choose her to lead the group, which includes singer Bob Geldof, CNN founder Ted Turner, UN special adviser Jeffrey Sachs and Graca Machel, formerly a minister in Mozambique and also wife of former South African president Nelson Mandela.
Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, 21 June 2012
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon’s MDG Advocates – eminent experts representing the private sector, academia, government and civil society -- have come together for a dialogue with young people on “Sustainable Futures: Accelerating the Progress of the MDGs through Youth Innovations.” The goal is strengthen global advocacy on the MDGs during the Rio+20 Summit and ensure linkages between poverty, climate change and sustainable development. The event signals that innovation and youth engagement is high on the UN agenda to move the anti-poverty goals forward in the post-2015 period. “Young people can and must play a central role in bringing dynamic new ideas, fresh thinking and energy to the 'Rio+20' process,” said the Secretary-General. Read the Secretary-General's speech here. Exclusive video of the event is available here.
The UN Pays tribute to Wangari Maathai
New York, USA, 25 September 2011
The United Nations paid tribute to late Nobel laureate, UN supporter and MDG advocate Wangari Maathai, one of Africa’s foremost environmental campaigners. Ms. Maathai was a “pioneer in articulating the links between human rights, poverty, environmental protection and security,” said Ban Ki-moon.
New York, USA, 21 September 2011
Meeting on the margins of the 66th UN General Assembly, the MDG Advocates endorsed an action plan that encourages each advocate to champion at least one of the specific MDG initiatives that are grouped in two thematic clusters: food security and sustainable growth; and education and health. Deputy Secretary-General Asha-Rose Migiro welcomed “the important leadership, passion and expertise” provided by the Advocacy Group and noted that “targeted interventions” in support of individual Goals would foster real progress.
Fourth UN Conference on the Least Developed Countries
MDG Advocates met on 8 May 2011 at the margins of the Fourth UN Conference on the Least Developed Countries in Istanbul, Turkey. "There is no way to achieving the Millennium Development Goals if we are not successful in achieving them in the Least Developed Countries," Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser said at the Conference. "Our success here is the real criteria of our commitment."
World Economic Forum
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (left side of table, centre) attends a meeting with members of his MDG Advocacy Group in Davos, Switzerland. Seated beside Mr. Ban is Paul Kagame (right), President of the Republic of Rwanda and Co-chair of the Group.
The MDG Advocates participating in the World Economic Forum Annual Meeting in Davos, Switzerland, held a meeting on 28 January with the UN Secretary-General.
The meeting, chaired by President Paul Kagame of Rwanda, focused on the presentation and discussion of an action plan for the MDG Advocacy Group for 2011, with concrete projects and actions that the Advocates would commit to implementing during the course of the year. Furthermore, the Advocates agreed that supporting country-led approaches and national action plans for the MDGs would be one of the organizing principles for the MDG Advocacy Group.
World Innovation Summit for Education
Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser speaking at the MDG high-level session at WISE, with fellow Advocate Ambassador Dho Young-shim, moderator Ghida Fakhry of Al Jazeera, and Thomas Stelzer, UN Assistant Secretary-General for Policy Coordination.
At a meeting on the margins of the World Innovation Summit for Education, in Doha, Qatar, the facilitators of the two thematic clusters of the Advocacy Group discussed their vision as well as concrete steps the group could take. The cluster facilitators agreed to identify and build on projects they were engaged in.
"Education is not just important – it’s a priority", the Sheikha said. Ambassador Dho noted that "in Korea, we are fortunate to live under the Confucius philosophy, 'everybody has to learn'." And Jeffrey Sachs, in a video address, stressed that, "without even a primary education, anybody is condemned to poverty in this world today."
UN MDG Forum
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (centre) has his photo taken with members of the public at the UN MDG forum hosted by National Assembly of the Republic of Korea on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Seoul.
The UN MDG Forum organized in conjunction with the G20 Summit in Seoul on 11-12 November 2010 was co-hosted by MDG Advocates Ambassador Dho Young-shim and Professor Jeffrey Sachs and members of the UN MDG Forum of the National Assembly of the Republic of Korea. UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon was a guest speaker.
As global leaders looked at rebalancing the world’s economies in the aftermath of the financial and economic crises, this MDG-focused event highlighted the need to narrow the development gap, reduce poverty and make sure the voices of the poor are heard.
UN Summit on the Millennium Development Goals
Bill Gates (right) chats with musician and activist Bob Geldof at the opening session of the MDG Advocacy Group Meeting.
In a historic meeting during the MDG Summit at UN Headquarters in New York, all of the Advocates committed themselves to concrete action in support of the MDGs and the acceleration of their implementation. A public event, chaired by Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, featured keynote speeches by H.E. Mr. Joseph Deiss, President of the 65th UN General Assembly, Her Highness Sheikha Moza bint Nasser of Qatar and Professor Muhammad Yunus. MDG Advocates also participated in many of the Summit-related events, such as the High-Level Roundtables and the UN Global Compact Private Sector Luncheon.
“When it comes to raising public awareness and mobilizing political will, we need eloquent voices, inspiring leadership and creative minds. That is why I have called upon you,” UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said at the opening of the Advocates’ meeting.
First meeting of the MDG Advocacy Group
UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon (left) chats with Michelle Bachelet, former President of Chile and member of the MDG Advocacy Group before being appointed Executive Director of UN Women, at the Palacio de la Moncloa in Madrid. Also in the picture: Ray Chambers, Antonio Banderas (UNDP Goodwill Ambassador who attended the meeting), Jeffrey Sachs, Jan Eliasson and Akin Adesina.
“This Group will identify strategic opportunities. You will help build awareness. You will help translate the rhetoric of good intentions into results – real results for real people,” UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon said at the opening of the first meeting of the MDG Advocacy Group.
The meeting in Madrid, hosted by Prime Minister Zapatero of Spain, was an opportunity to discuss how the Advocates could advance progress towards the Goals, strengthen the Secretary-General’s initiatives and help bolster the engagement and commitment of all stakeholders. The Advocates also discussed initiatives and concrete actions they were pursuing in support of specific MDGs.