Exactly one year ago the Sustainable Development Goals were launched and signed by 193 world leaders on 25th September 2015 at the UN General Assembly.
The goals were agreed with the ambition of achieving an end to extreme poverty, inequality and climate change by 2030.
In the seven days following, news of these Global Goals reached around three billion people, or 40 per cent of the world’s population.
The 18th to the 25th September is #GlobalGoals week – a week where our world leaders have the chance to start making these goals a reality.
In order to keep up momentum and ensure all 17 Goals are achieved, the UN and partners from around the world launched #GlobalGoals Week – an annual week of action, awareness and accountability for Sustainable Development.
Kicking off at the UN General Assembly Opening, with Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Year 1, is a special session featuring SDG Advocates Forest Whitaker and Doctor Alaa Murabit, Andrea Bocelli, the President of the General Assembly Peter Thomson and the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon.
In 2016, Girl Power went global with the film #WhatIReallyReallyWant, inspiring women and girls from around the world to send messages on equality for girls and women.
Whilst leaders attended SDG Year 1, a Global Girls bus began a loud tour of New York, ensuring messages received were heard loud and clear.
Starting at Times Square with a performance by dancers from the #WhatIReallyReallyWant film, Taylor Hatala and Larsen Thompson were then led around New York by MJ Delaney, bringing together girls and women to shout about the progress that still needs to be made for women and girls.
Meg Ryan and Global Goals Award winners, Yusra Mardini and Rebeca Gyumi, then took the bus to the UN, to join Forest Whitaker and Richard Curtis, to formally deliver messages, inspired by the #WhatIReallyReallyWant film, to David Nabarro, following the SDG Year 1 Session.
The Global Girls bus ended its journey at Guastavino’s for the inaugural Global Goals Awards Dinner, hosted by SDG Advocates Paul Polman and Richard Curtis.
Guests at the dinner included Queen Rania of Jordan, Crown Princess of Sweden, Mark Ruffalo, Forest Whitaker, Connie Brittan, with a performance by Laura Mvula.
Speeches were made by Melinda Gates, Jim Kim, Shane Smith, Prime Minister of Norway Erna Solberg and the evenings two hosts.
Honours were awarded to those who have helped make progress towards gender equality and included The Social Change Award, awarded to Rebeca Gyumi by Christiane Amanpour; the Campaigner Award awarded to DoctHERS campaigners by Chris Anderson from TED and the Girl Award awarded to Yusra Mardini by Angelique Kidjo.
The #WhatIReallyReallyWant film, released earlier this year, had over 110 million views, 40 million impressions on Twitter and global media coverage. It was produced by MJ Delaney and supported by original Spice Girls, Victoria Beckham and Mel C.
The film inspired an overwhelming response on social media with people from all over the world sharing images of what they really want for girls and women.
This included the messages, delivered to the United Nations, of issues like quality education, an end to violence, an end to child marriage and equal pay for equal work, which need to be top of every governments’ agenda in order to give the Global Goals the best possible start.