- MDGs have been ineffective in fragile and conflict-affected environments
- Because of that, 1.5 billion people have missed out on more than a decade of concerted international action on poverty reduction
- EU decision makers must stop at nothing to reach the most marginalized in the hardest place to live as they will implement the SDGs
World Vision says the final Millennium Development Goals (MDG) progress report (due 6 July) will confirm what many already know; children and their families in fragile states largely did not benefit from the 15 year global initiative to reduce poverty.
“It became apparent early on the MDGs just weren’t relevant in fragile states and there needed to be greater emphasis on inclusive governance, justice and peace. Many nations simply weren’t set up for success,” says Chris Derksen-Hiebert, World Vision’s Director of Public Policy. “For instance, while globally there are 173 million fewer people suffering from chronic hunger, many fragile or conflict-affected countries have recorded increases.”
Among those who won't meet the goal focused on eradicating extreme poverty and hunger is South Sudan where a quarter of a million children are currently at risk of malnutrition. The civil war has caused severe food shortages with the UNDP lamenting the massive level of poverty and deplorable human development situation there.
In the southern hemisphere, Papua New Guinea, also considered a fragile state, has amongst the worst maternal and child mortality rates (MDGs 4 & 5) in the world.
“The Pacific presents a human development challenge that often goes unnoticed. One in 16 children born there won’t make it to their fifth birthday. Of those who do survive, 50 per cent will be stunted,” says Nancy Waites, World Vision’s Advocacy Manager for Pacific Timor Leste.
Gaps in the MDG architecture should not take away from the progress that has been made though. The number of people living in extreme poverty has been reduced by 700 million people and preventable child deaths have been cut in half.
The new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) framework that will replace the MDG must be a comprehensive, universal and transformative one. “The purpose of the SDGs is to create a world free of hunger and extreme poverty by 2030.” Says World Vision Brussels Director of Advocacy, Deirdre de Burca.
“This new framework must focus on the needs of children and their communities. Too many still live in poverty, face inequalities or are exploited. They cannot enjoy life in all its fullness” she adds. “World leaders and EU decision makers must stop at nothing to reach the most marginalized in the hardest place to live as they will implement the SDGs”
World Vision is a Christian relief, development and advocacy organisation dedicated to working with children, families and communities worldwide to reach their full potential by tackling the causes of poverty and injustice. It works in close to 100 countries in most regions of the world including Latin America and the Caribbean, Europe, Africa, the Middle East and the Asia Pacific Region.
For more information please contact Ludovic Wahis, Policy and Communications Officer, World Vision Brussels & EU Representation, +32 (0) 2 274 18 67, Ludovic_Wahis@wvi.org