2015: A Pivotal Year

Each new year brings in a renewed sense of hope. Any unaccomplished projects and ambitions are given another chance to be realized. 2014 was a year where individuals banded together and called for change. People’s Climate March brought global attention to the urgency for climate action in politics and Millions March NYC brought global attention to racial injustices. 2015 is going to be a pivotal year for social change and progress.

2015 marks the end of the Millennium Development Goals, which were established at the turn of the millennium by member states of the United Nations. Some goals were achieved ahead of schedule while some are severely lagging. The Post-2015 Agenda is being developed, where the global development agenda will refocus Millennium Development Goals with sustainable development at its core.

The United Nations is continuing to reach out to members of the public to vote on topics they would want decision makers to act upon: MY World 2015. Voters can also suggest a topic if it is not already listed (ie. nuclear non-proliferation).

“The UN is working with governments everywhere to define the next global agenda to address extreme poverty and preserve the planet. The data from MY World continues to inform these processes and be used by decision makers around the world.” See what I voted for: http://vote.myworld2015.org/nalat.phanit

2014 ended with 20,206 known Ebola cases, including fatalities. Some communities are seeing a decline in cases while others are seeing an increase. It is uncertain how the crisis will affect economies, politics, and societies especially when the attention on the crisis is waning. “Medecins Sans Frontieres warned of growing complacency over the disease…[and that] the ebola crisis in West Africa is likely to last until the end of 2015” (Nebehay, Stephanie and Tom Miles).

With rising tensions amongst nuclear states, nuclear weapons made headlines in 2014. After Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster of 2011, ramifications on health, food safety, water safety, continued to appear as topics of public interest in 2014. Although nuclear weapons and nuclear power related issues are being considered in the development of the Post-2015 Agenda, it is not gaining popularity amongst the public.

Breakdown of votes by topic. Data last updated on January 4, 2015.

Breakdown of votes by topic. Data last updated on January 4, 2015.

Whatever your cause, whatever your passion, whatever it is that makes you angry at the world, let your voice be heard. While the United Nations Task Team on the Post-2015 UN Development Agenda are figuring things out, take action in your local communities to shape a world that you would want to live in by 2030.

Before voting, here is an update on each of the goals:

Goal 1: Eradicate Extreme Poverty and Hunger

Goal 2: Achieve Universal Primary Education

Goal 3: Promote Gender Equality and Empower Women

Goal 4: Reduce Child Mortality

Goal 5: Improve Maternal Health

Goal 6: Combat HIV/AIDS, Malaria and Other Diseases

Goal 7: Ensure Environmental Sustainability

Goal 8: Global Partnership For Development

If you are living in the Atlanta, Georgia area, The United Nations Association of Atlanta is launching a Young Professionals group, connecting youths to the Millennium Development Goals. We are looking for volunteers who want to take leadership roles for each of the goals. Goal leaders are encouraged to educate their group on selected global issues and current events, implement creative projects to bring awareness to selected issues, and work with other core team members in expanding United Nations Association Young Professionals of Atlanta. For more information, please visit UNA of Atlanta website.

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