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Civil society, volunteers ‘crucial’ to achieve sustainable development goals, workshop hears

By Dana Al Emam - Apr 19,2017 - Last updated at Apr 19,2017

Participants from various civil society organisations and humanitarian aid agencies participate in a workshop in Amman on Wednesday (Photo by Dana Al Emam)

AMMAN — Civil society organisations and volunteer work are essential to advance the implementation of national strategies to realise the international Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), stakeholders agreed on Wednesday.

At a workshop organised by UN Volunteers, Ziad Obeidat, director of the Planning Ministry’s Development Department, underscored the government’s keenness to work with civil society and all stakeholders to achieve the 17 key development goals by 2030.

He noted that Jordan has embedded most of the SDG 2030 agenda’s 169 targets within the national 2025 vision, the government’s executive development programme (2016-2019), as well as a number of regulations including laws governing local and municipality elections.

 Obeidat cited the “great” intersections between the mapping of the national plan and the international agenda.

The roadmap to achieve the SDGs within the national plan entails raising public awareness of the SDGs to enhance national ownership of the goals, the official said, adding that the national plan comprises 600 performance indicators designed to provide feedback for improvement.

Obeidat added that the roadmap also seeks to build national capacities regarding the integration and implementation of the SDGs in national plans and policies.

Tomas Kvedaras, head of the UN’s volunteering programmes in Jordan, said the implementation of the 2030 SDGs requires the collective work of a coalition of stakeholders across various fields.

As a refugee-hosting country, Jordan has been witnessing growing challenges in various sectors including water scarcity, youth unemployment, the smoking epidemic and the low participation of women in the labour market.

Rami Shishan, a facilitator of the workshop, cited three main goals for UN Volunteers regarding the SGDs: enhancing a sense of local ownership of the agenda, enhancing volunteering in post-2015 implementation strategies and measuring volunteering in a way that promotes a more comprehensive public understanding of the goals.   

 

Participants in the workshop highlighted the importance of close partnership between their civil society organisations and agencies with the government to better address national development needs.

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