What do you know about the United Nations and the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)?

On the 15th May 2017, the High School Practicum Program (HSPP) participants took on the task to bring information to the public by raising awareness about the United Nations and its mandate. The main focus of this exhibition was to domesticate the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as well as distribute other publications of the United Nations. The exhibition took place at Wernhil Mall and the display stand was located in front of Wimpy with UN banners and material about the United Nations.

In an effort to support the UN in achieving vision 2030, the (HSPP) participants distributed materials to the public which comprised of the UN Charter, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) flyers, the Namibian Constitution and the SDG report 2016.

The team approached the public, both young and old by handing out flyers and utilizing the skills learned over the past week to speak to the public and tell them more about the SDGs and the United Nations. The public information sharing and knowledge management exercise is also aimed at youth supporting or engaging the youth. The Namibian population is primarily made up of the youth who comprises of 66% of the total population. The future leaders needs to take control of the country’s development agenda and educated themselves on the ideals of the UN to make informed decisions that will be beneficial to the future of the country.

At the beginning of the activity the participants were a bit hesitant and struggled with identifying who to approach, but with time confidence was gained and it became easier to approach random strangers and spread the message across cultures.

The public was very engaging and asking questions such as what are the SDGs about, what is the UN currently doing? How does this information benefit them as a public?  What evidence is there to show that the UN is working towards vision 2030?

This experience taught the learners how to step out of their comfort zones and take charge of the task at hand. The learners realized that the majority of the people were not aware of the work of the UN, to their surprise, most people were pleasantly curious to learn more about the SDGs, the UN and its mandate.

“This was a priceless experience, one that we have never encountered and we can proudly say that we will carry on the message and continue to raise awareness about the UN and its work in the future.”