“Meet on MDGs”
Campaign in Chittagong
Md. Saimum Reza Talukder
The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are the most broadly supported, comprehensive and specific development goals the world has ever agreed upon. There are eight basic time-bound goals along with thirty-nine indicators regarding the poverty eradication, universal primary education, gender equality, child mortality, maternal health, environmental sustainability, diseases and the Global Partnership for Development.
Although the MDGs have been very particular in those issues, the targets and indicators for many of the goals do not acknowledge the variety of human factors that drive and deepen the poverty. The definition of development goes into vain if the human rights are not ensured. For example, there are many countries of the world that have a good and strong economy but the people don't have the proper right to information or right to speak there. So, these are the development of the state merely, not the development of human being. Though many countries have addressed the eight goals cited in the development plan, their actions remain futile as it has yet to reach the human rights standards. Although the MDGs hope to change the world by 2015, it has yet to reach the people at the most basic level of society. Integrating international human rights standards into MDGs efforts could lead to more meaningful progress on the MDGs in the next five years.
So, the Asia Pacific Youth Network (APYN) created an opportunity for youth across this region to express their thoughts on MDGs and its relationship with human rights. It was “Meet on MDGs”, a gathering of young individuals to answer five important questions on MDGs and human rights through interactive discussions. In Bangladesh, United Nations Youth and Students Association of Bangladesh (UNYSAB) organised the sessions in association with APYN. In Chittagong, UNYSAB Chittagong Wing organized this in association with University of Chittagong, Asian University for Women and Premier University where members of UNYSAB, Chittagong Wing were present including UNYSAB Deputy Director Rahat Alam Chowdhury. As most of the students had no clear idea on MDGs and Human Rights before, UNYSAB conducted informative interactive sessions. The discussions helped students to get rid of some wrong perceptions, which are a major bar to ensure Human Rights.
In the sessions, the students were briefed about the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and MDGs, first which helped the students to think and share some of their constructive thoughts and ideas and thus filling up a questionnaire containing five questions on MDGs and human right. At the end, the participants came up with so many innovative judgments that made it hard enough to reach a single solution.
UNYSAB will forward these ideas to APYN, which will be used as creative tool for further campaigning and will be delivered to think tankers worldwide. Through this way, once again UNYSAB promoted UN mission and vision by the leadership through volunteerism. And thanks to APYN for such a wonderful opportunity that provided platform to the youth to throw something thought provoking towards the world.
(The writer is a Member, UNYSAB CU Chapter)