Sidra Yousaf

Sidra Yousaf

18 år gammel oslojente, med et stort engasjementet og interesse for menneskerettighetene, rettferdighet og likestilling. Ellers går meste av fritiden ut på venner og prokrastinering av skolearbeid.

Bærekraftig utvikling
Sidra og Julie som snakker om bærekraftsmålene. Foto: Terje Karlsen / FN-sambandet.
Sidra og Julie som snakker om bærekraftsmålene. Foto: Terje Karlsen / FN-sambandet.

2. august var jeg og Julie så heldige å få tale på seminaret «Youth In Action» arrangert av Norway Cup. Med ungdommer fra over 200 nasjonaliteter, andre viktige talere, sterke historier og nasjonal dans fra Palestina var dette en veldig lærerrik og inspirerende opplevelse for oss begge. Vår oppgave som representanter for FN-sambandets ungdomspanel var å fortelle om de nye bærekraftsmålene, og hvorfor de er viktige for oss unge (The Sustainable Development Goals – Why they matter to us). Den mest utfordrende delen for oss begge var nok at alle talene skulle holdes på engelsk. Under kan du lese hele talen vår.

Hello everyone!

My name is Sidra Yousaf, I am 18 years old from Oslo and have played football for many years though I must admit I do not play football anymore. My name  is Julie Sætre, I am 17 years old and from Bergen, and I am actually participating in this this cup with my team Nordhordland BK. In common Sidra and I are writers for the Youth Panel of the UN Association in Norway. That means we write articles and chronicles about current news and  important issues that we care about. For us it is a way of expressing our thoughts, and maybe our anger, at the people living in this world.

Check out our webpage!

"It means that we should not destroy something that could become a resource in the future"   Foto: Terje Karlsen / FN-sambandet.

«It means that we should not destroy something that could become a resource in the future» Foto: Terje Karlsen / FN-sambandet.

 

The new Sustainable Development Goals were in the year of 2015 introduced to the 193 member countries of the United Nations. They  replaced the “Millennium Goals” which UN countries have worked with for 15 years. The new Global Goals as they also are called, consist of 17 main goals and 169 secondary goals, and they are supposed to show what the main focus of each country wanting a sustainable development should be. Just like the Millennium Goals, the Global Goals have a due date of 15 years, that means the goals should be fulfilled within 2030.

 Each country has now agreed to the challenging task of fulfilling these goals internally, but international cooperation is also very important. Goal number 17 actually describes the importance of cooperating with other countries to complete the goals. Important men and women, in prominent government positions, are the ones who have agreed to this challenge for the country they represent, and they try to convince us that the goals are some of the most important things to try to achieve.

But what about our thoughts? Why should the Sustainable Development Goals matter to us youths?

Foto: Terje Karlsen / FN-sambandet.

Foto: Terje Karlsen / FN-sambandet.

 To answer that question we would like to define the term “sustainable development”. It means that we, in this generation, shall not overconsume a resource in danger of damaging the earth for the next generation. It means that we should not destroy something that could become a resource in the future. It means that we are supposed to leave this world in better shape, and with better future prospects, than when we came here.

As Julie has explained perfectly sustainable development is for us to take care of the earth. This also includes the people living on it. We have to ensure their rights today for them to have any actual value for the next generation.

Our work towards a more sustainable world starts today & right now.

To enlighten you further about the sustainable development goals and what we as a part of the young generation today can do to work towards a better world for more peope can do, me and Julie will present to you the sustainable development goals decided by the UN that are the most important to us.

 

Did you know that more than one billion children worldwide per date are living in poverty?

For me, that is not okay. Not now, not ever.  Therefore, Development goal number 1 that highlights “no poverty” is very important to me. Think about it. We wake up every morning, in a safe home, in a safe reality where the sky is the limit. Living our lives we must not forget 11 years old Amna in Afghanistan who does not have all these possibilities. She or he who is too poor to do the things many of us take as given in our daily life. For children to not be able to reach their potential and their dreams is not okay.

Not now, not ever.

A very common saying is, “knowledge is power”. This is a statement I support 100%. 

An educated  person is able to think individually, rationally and they have a chance of obtaining a better future no matter what conditions they are forced into. In my opinion, education is one of the best gifts that can be given to children around the world. With education we can create a pathway out of poverty for poor people, we can stop xenophobia, we can create a better world. According to UNESCO, 61 million primary school-age children were not enrolled in school in 2010. When did this become something that is okay? Since this is not okay, not now, not ever, development goal number 4 which fortifies quality education is very important to me. With more educated children we can prevent things like child marriage, poverty, child labour and so much more. Don´t you want to become a hero? If so, ensuring not only education but quality education must be a first priority. Today and right now.

 

Goal number 5 says: «Achieve gender equality and empower all women and girls”

This goal matters to me, as a girl, because it helps securing my rights due to my gender. I am born and raised here in Norway, and therefore I know that I have been very lucky. In countries like the Central African Republic, the male-dominated society is very widespread. The education of girls is not a priority, and according to an article by USA Today, almost 70% of the girls are married before they turn 18. They’re even not allowed to play football. This goal matters to be, because I know that every single individual is worth the same. I want every girl and every woman to be happy with their life, and be free from the male-domination.

Goal number 13 says: “Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts”

Did you know that rain forest, similar to the size of the football pitch at Ullevål Stadium, has been cut down while I told you this sentence? 

Did you know that because of the constant increasing of global average temperature, the sea level has risen almost 20 cm since 1901?

If we do not take action right now, and try to do something about it, we will face severe problems like more extreme weather that can cause lack of food and clean water, and destroy villages in the least prosperous countries of the world. This goal is the one that maybe matters the most to me, because  global warming and climate change is highly important and an urgent problem that will strike us all. The ones that will suffer the most from the extreme weather caused by pollution, are the developing countries. The poorest countries will have to suffer from the prosperity and the overconsumption of the richest countries.

Vi får to fine premie-troll som takk for vår deltagelse. Foto: Terje Karlsen / FN-sambandet.

Vi får to fine premie-troll som takk for vår deltagelse.
Foto: Terje Karlsen / FN-sambandet.

 

Okay, Sidra. So we have mentioned many sustainable goals that need to be reached. But what can we actually do? We who are a part of the younger generation?

As a young person myself I tend to think that I do not have that much power to be able to do something, and the question is always, how can I actually do something?

Well, there are actually several things we can do reach these goal little by little. The code word is engagement. The more we as the younger generation are engaged in reaching these goals, the closer we are to a more sustainable world.

But how to engage?

  • For instance, you can engage in the sustainable development movement through social media. Show your engagement through facebook, twitter, instagram and other platforms. Share cases, spread the word.
  • Talk with your friends, parents, teachers and everyone else about these goals. Its important to make awareness around these goals.

So as you can see there are many ways of showing engagement and contribute in this sustainable movement even though you are young.

Also I f you want to do something here now at Norway Cup you can take the Dizzy-goal challenge, as many famous football players like Harry Kane, Gareth Bale and Michael Owen have done. By taking this challenge you show your engagement and support for the sustainable development goals.

While taking this challenge remember to hashtag #DizzyGoals and tag @fnsambandet and @theglobalgoals.

Remember that we all need to work together towards a more sustainable world!

 

Thank you!

(Under kan du se Gareth Bale ta Dizzy Goal Challenge! / Under you can see Gareth Bale taking the Dizzy Goal Challenge!)

 

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Sidra Yousaf

Sidra Yousaf

18 år gammel oslojente, med et stort engasjementet og interesse for menneskerettighetene, rettferdighet og likestilling. Ellers går meste av fritiden ut på venner og prokrastinering av skolearbeid.