Thirteen years ago, the United Nations laid out a vision to tackle global poverty and disease by 2015. The vision has come to be widely known as Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). On February 20, ONE, a movement working against poverty, launched an SMS campaign to solicit views from Malawians on what they want the next MDG targets to be. Ephraim Munthali caught up with ONE Africa director Dr Sipho Moyo who sheds more light on the new movement.
What is ONE?
Co-founded by Bono and strictly non-partisan, the ONE Campaign is three million people and growing every day who take action together to end extreme poverty, particularly in Africa … because we believe where you live shouldn’t determine whether you live.
Our teams educate, advocate, lobby and collaborate to spotlight solutions—while our members around the globe call, write, rally and raise their voices as ONE to push for progress—on global funding, expanded efforts to treat and stop the spread of Aids and other preventable diseases, critical investments in agriculture and nutrition and greater transparency.
What is the link between One and MDGs?
In 2000, leaders from 189 countries laid out a bold new vision to tackle global poverty and disease by 2015. The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) rallied the world around a set of global targets aimed at halving extreme poverty, improving health and education outcomes and increasing access to clean water and sanitation systems. Since then, the world has made dramatic progress towards achieving these goals and there is strong consensus that another set of goals should be agreed upon once they expire in 2015.
Why are these goals important to the average African?
Africans must come together and take control of our own destiny. All of us have a part to play in fighting preventable disease and hunger on the continent. By having a say in the next millennium development goals, we can all take ownership and bring about the end of poverty together. It isn’t a pipe dream, it is well within reach.
What is the ONE “You Choose” Campaign?
“You Choose” is a pilot SMS-based campaign that will form part of the effort to ensure that the design of the next development agenda is open, inclusive; evidence based and puts the views of the poorest at its centre. It aims to feed into the UN’s country and thematic consultations as well as the High Level Panel. It will work in close partnership with “My World” and share results on the ‘worldwewant2015’ web platform.
Through traditional and non-traditional media, “You Choose” will use innovative methods and new technologies to allow people in Malawi, South Africa and Zambia, to tell the High-Level panel the most important issues they would like the post-2015 agenda to address.
To reach those who do not have access to communications technologies, we’ve used sub-national poverty data to create a target map and leveraged a network of NGOs, faith groups and youth groups to make sure that people in those areas participate in large numbers off line. We want to reach as many people as we can, especially the world’s poorest and most marginalized communities, so that everyone’s voice can be heard.
How can people get involved?
By texting 57111 in Malawi and sharing what one thing they think is most important in ending poverty. or by going to one.org/africa, and completing a questionnaire for the same purpose.
What will be done with the information collected from the campaign?
Outcomes of “My World” and “You Choose Your World” will be shared on one platform with feedback aimed at enriching the High Level Panel on the MDG discussions, as well as the Secretary General’s report.
You Choose data will be analysed at regular intervals, with assistance on statistical rigor from a well-established opinion polling company. The analysis will summarise the responses to date, highlight any interesting differences or similarities between different groups or countries, and link the results to the on-going post-2015 policy debate.
It aims to feed into the UN’s country and thematic consultations as well as the High Level Panel. It will work in close partnership with “My World” and share results on the ‘worldwewant2015’ web platform. The hard data about people’s biggest concern and priorities will then be presented at the UN’s meeting of High Level Panel on the new development framework at the end of March in Bali, Indonesia.
Who are some of the personalities supporting this campaign?
In Malawi, we have comedian Bon ‘Winiko’ Kalindo and popular musician Dan Lu, Hugh Masekela, Lira, D’banj, Chris Katongo, Benni McCarthy, Slap Dee and Mampi.
The ONE Campaign is part of the coalition that is executing “My World”, what IS “My World”?
Efforts to ensure the broadest reach possible for the inclusion of ordinary voices into the global conversation on the next set of development goals are underway.
The ONE Campaign is part of the coalition that will execute “My World”, a global options survey that will bring in a broader reach of voices and, alongside the UN country consultations, feedback outcomes that will broaden the understanding of what citizens’ feel will have the most impact on their lives. Outcomes of My World will also feed into the UN country consultations.