Sustainable Development Goals @ Spendow
At Spendow, this is our BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal) - the guiding vision and purpose since our founding in June 2019.
We live in a time of unparalleled wealth and technological advancements and yet, billions of people still live in poverty, hunger, exclusion and conflict. These societal trends if left unchecked, are pushing the boundaries of environmental safety, disastrously changing the climate and accelerating inequality.
It is against this backdrop that the United Nations created the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The Sustainable Development Goals are a collection of 17 global goals designed to be a "blueprint for achieving a better and more sustainable future for all".
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) — endorsed by 193 countries in 2015 as a blueprint for policy through 2030 — represent a holistic response to this complex set of the interrelated challenges humanity faces today.
A closer look at the SDGs as developed by the United Nations reveals an interesting point; they are about countries, policies and other global topics. SDGs do not engage young people in a practical, exciting or understandable level. So at Spendow, we have decided to make SDGs more approachable and pragmatic.
To do so, we had to ask some questions:
- How can young people contribute towards the vision behind SDGs in their communities?
- How can we make SDGs align with the culture and interests of young people?
- How can young people achieve positive impact as well as fulfil their personal goals/dreams?
In answering these questions, SDG-17 stuck out as being of particular importance. It is about Partnerships - working together across industries, disciplines, cultures and ideologies to safeguard our future.
On Spendow, the solution is clear - we create Partnerships.
With leading brands and retailers from the eCommerce space
With online shoppers (young people) who increasingly do their shopping online and want to have an impact.
With Causes and NGOs seeking innovative ways to fund their activities.
These three parties work together towards meeting the goals of the SDGs. A scenario is as follows.
This means Nike donates 3.5% of the purchase to Girls Empowerment Foundation.
The Cause directs this funding towards girls education. This activity fits into one of the SDGs on Equality and Quality Education.
It is a win-win for everyone.
Because of this approach, SDGs are now effectively in the hands of the typical person who can
make an impact in small but significant ways that add up fast.
The brands and retailers not only gain loyal customers because of this authentic way to collaborate with their customers, but they also achieve their mandate to be sustainable corporations.
Causes can access a unique and innovative means to raise funding. They are also in a position to create relationships with the younger digital native and socially conscious generation.
The Other SDGs
About 1 billion people still live in poverty — defined as an income of less than US $1.25 per day. The targets under Goal 1 include aiming for a world where the poor are not vulnerable to climate change, and have “equal rights to economic resources.”
Ending hunger also includes ending malnutrition, protecting small farmers, and changing farming itself so that agriculture and ecosystems can co-exist. It also means protecting the genetic diversity of the crops we grow, while investing in research to make farming more and more productive, especially in developing countries. By 2030, we need to ensure that no one ever goes hungry.
This Goal includes a comprehensive agenda for tackling a wide range of global health challenges, from tuberculosis and AIDS to traffic accidents and alcoholism.
The Targets covers the need for access to university-level education, vocational training, and entrepreneurship skills, and they pay special attention to issues of equity. This Goal also includes the promotion of education for sustainable development.
Equality and empowerment includes freedom from discrimination and violence. It also includes making sure woman have their equal share of leadership opportunities and responsibilities, as well as property ownership and other concrete reflections of power in society.
Basic water scarcity affects 40% of the global population, and nearly a billion people do not have access to that most basic of technologies: a toilet or latrine.
Globally, about 1.3 billion people live without access to electricity. Modern energy is also connected to access to water - you need energy to get water. In the wealthier countries, who have energy, this Goal pushes for conversion to renewable sources, and it calls for dramatic improvements in efficiency everywhere.
At least 75 million young people around the world, aged 15-24, are unemployed, out of school, and looking at a bleak future. This Goal, while calling for economic growth to help close that gap
The world is becoming more industrialized, but often not in ways that are resilient and sustainable. This Goal aims for ensuring that everyone can enjoy the benefits of what humanity can build — and for fostering a much more innovative and environmentally sound approach to industrial development.
The world is astonishingly unequal: the richest 80 people have the same wealth as the bottom 3.5 billion. The Goal includes a range of measures, including regulation of the financial markets, to make the playing field more level. Importantly, it also covers the issue of migration, which should be “orderly, safe, regular and responsible.”
More than half the world lives in cities, and by 2050, at least 66% will — and most of the growth in cities is happening in Africa and Asia. If those cities are not sustainable, the world will not be, either. This Goal also covers issues like transportation, disaster preparedness, and even the preservation of “the world’s cultural and natural heritage.”
The world’s nations need to make the way we produce and consume goods more sustainable. This covers topics like reducing food waste, corporate sustainability practice, public procurement, and making people aware of how their lifestyle choices make a difference.
Reduce violence. End torture. Decrease the production and flow of arms. Reduce corruption. Create governments and institutions that work … for everyone.