Turning Applause Into Action: A 4-step Action Plan for Getting Involved in the Global Goals for Sustainable Development


The Global Goals for Sustainable Development, a to-do list for humanity, were approved just over a week ago in New York City. Anyone working in this field is riding a collective high and those directly involved with the drafting of the Global Goals for Sustainable Development have breathed a sigh of relief. But the adoption of the Global Goals mark just the beginning of a long road to hitting the 169 targets approved by 193 countries.

Here are four steps you can take if you want to play your part in tackling the Global Goals:

1. Find your passion

A lot is going on in the 17 Global Goals — from ending world hunger to achieving gender equality, this wasn’t a plan crafted for the faint at heart. Check out the goals here and lay your claim on the one that most aligns with your passion and curiosity.

2. Evaluate your skills and resources

What are you good at? This can be so-called hard skills, like web development, social media or writing, but think bigger than that. Are you a good public speaker? Can you cook? Do you have access to a car? Can you speak a second language? A flexible work schedule?

There are a plethora of resources and skills we all possess. Organizations are looking for volunteers to do everything from mentoring a refugee on how to enter the job market to setting up tables for a gala. A lot of small every day tasks go into making a huge impact.

3. Find organizations that inspire you

There are tens of thousands of organizations tackling issues covered in the Global Goals, and each one has a unique perspective and solution to offer. From faith-based organizations to Fortune 500 philanthropies, there’s something for everyone. Now that you know what skills and resources you’d like to use, you should have a clear idea of whether you’d like to support an organization virtually, locally or globally. Start a Google search that combines your interests and your skill sets, then use a site like Charity Navigator to investigate their efficacy and overall standing in the non-profit world.

4. Connect and be relentless

Hooray! You’ve found the sweet spot where your passions and skills intersect with an organization doing work you care about. Now is the time to reach out and offer up your services. Larger organizations tend to have a regimented process for on-boarding volunteers, and many require a certain level of commitment over a period of time. Smaller, local organizations can be more flexible. Whichever route you go, ensure you’re committed and ready to contribute in a meaningful way.

The Global Goals cannot be achieved without deep collaboration. It’s important to remember that there is no one organization with the solution to today’s biggest crises. And we must remember that nothing exists in a silo — we will need to work across sectors and borders if we are to come even close to seeing a world with no poverty, no hunger, no injustice.

Are you in? Share the ways you want to get involved in the comments below.

Jennie is the Director of Marketing at TechChange and is a 2015 Social Good Summit UNA Blogger Fellow.

A version of this post was published by the UNA Blog.
Featured image credit: DFID Flickr

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