Each of us in the world have a responsibility to work collectively and collaboratively for a better today and a promising future. From young individuals to multinationals to global peace keeping bodies, we have all placed our trust in the power of working together for a shared purpose which is a sustainable future for our world..
We are fortunate today to have multiple platforms and agendas through which we can work towards making this world a better place. One such organisation that has given AIESEC a platform through which we can create impact is the United Nations (UN). In 2015, the UN welcomed AIESEC's intentions to align its five-year strategy with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Aligning our 2020 vision of growing disruptively, shaping what we do around what the world needs and being able to engage and develop every young person in the world, we adopted the Global Goals as part of our agenda. We did so that we may create awareness for the goals through our members, partners, collaborators and young people across the world, fostering engagement by facilitating conversations on issues that matter to young people and to discuss how they will generate valuable actionable ideas to address them. .
So, what is AIESEC in Nepal doing to achieve these collaborative measures? To start with, we have focussed our attention to a few of the sustainable development goals that we believe will have a direct impact in the country. Here is how we are promoting our efforts through shared ventures with stakeholders within the country. .
Quality Education (SDG 4): There are hundreds of government and private primary and secondary educational institutions in the country. While there is no evidence of a shortage of teachers, there is certainly an element of a global exposure missing in the school systems. To bridge this gap, we have been partnering with over a hundred schools in the Valley and in Butwal to promote SDG 4. We do this through our project ‘Lessons for Nepal' by providing international volunteers to the schools whose primary responsibilities are to teach and implement a curriculum that promotes the UN SDGs. They ensure that the children understand and are empowered by the commitments their country has made to achieve the 2030 goals. .
Decent Work and Economic Growth (SDG 8): Nepal is a country rich in culture, adventures and has a bustling tourism industry. Given that every year almost thousands of tourists visit the country for hikes and adventures, the local communities and terrain are continuously exposed to all kinds of opportunities that they are not aware of. There is also tremendous pressure on resources and economic development of people who depend on this industry for their living. Keeping the 2030 target in mind to devise and implement policies to promote sustainable tourism that creates jobs and promotes local culture and products, we at AIESEC decided to create ‘Voluntrekking' projects that help us work together with local trekking companies and families. We open up the opportunities to young people interested in these projects from abroad who by trekking are tasked with surveying the villages' en-route the trek. Their sole responsibility is to study things like the energy consumption pattern of homes and businesses along the trek and understand how tourism has affected their economic and social livelihood. Through these six to eight-week opportunities, we are not only providing young people from abroad the opportunity to explore Nepal, but also fostering business for the locals while working together to make it happen. .
Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions (SDG 16): We all know how Nepal's presence as a landlocked country plays a crucial role in regional cooperation for South Asia. The indifferences between our neighbouring countries India and Pakistan constantly loom above our heads with fears of rising tension. Taking a different approach to peace building initiatives between the two countries, we are working on ‘The Dear Neighbour' project. This project in partnership with our sister AIESEC entities in India and Pakistan aim to mobilise youth from the two countries for a volunteer teaching project in Nepal. The project creates a co-working environment and cross-cultural communication between a Pakistani and an Indian that helps them discuss opportunities for peace. .
Currently AIESEC in Nepal is working towards building its local partnerships for the Global Goals. We have approached and been approached by multiple youth organisations, as well as UN agencies such as UNDP, UNESCO and many more, all of whom are in the shared commitment of working for the SDGs. By fostering these partnerships we are hoping to create opportunities for young people within this country by giving them a platform through which they can engage and deliver on their promises for their country. .