As many of you know, the United Nations declared seventeen new goals for the world. Called the Sustainable Development Goals – 17 Goals to Transform the World with a 2030 end date.
From UN.org “On September 25th 2015, countries adopted a set of goals to end poverty, protect the planet, and ensure prosperity for all as part of a new sustainable development agenda. Each goal has specific targets to be achieved over the next 15 years.”
Ambitious yes! Impossible? Maybe not as much as you think.
Let’s relate a few of them to the work being done in Tanzania by this project.
Goal 1: End poverty in all its forms everywhere
- The overwhelming majority of people living on less than $1.25 a day belong to two regions: Southern Asia and sub-Saharan Africa
- Tanzania is in sub-Saharan Africa
- The Bridge to Africa remains committing to working with rural women who have less access to resources than urban dwellers.
- Our women have access to the knowledge, capital and support to take their businesses well beyond the barrier of extreme poverty. It is up to them to reach higher. We wish to enable not out right donate as a cycle of dependence does not need to be created.
Goal 2: End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition and promote sustainable agriculture
- 66 million primary school-age children attend classes hungry across the developing world, with 23 million in Africa alone.
- Our women notice the first big change in their income when they can provide more nutritious and regular meals to their families. Three meals a day is the goal. This means for everyone in the family so the women are not having to sacrifice their food to feed the children or a partner.
- A simple observance of a women who has gone from extremely thin to one who has gained weight tells us that the meals are flowing to the women, too.
- As for nutritious food, proteins are the most important stable missing from most diets in Tanzania. Vegetables grow well and carbydrates come easily in the form of inexpensive rice, maize and other flours.
- Access to protein for our women usually starts with a few eggs from their chicken business. Feeding themselves and selling extras. We see this expand to pigs for meat plus milk and meat from goats and cows.
- As for sustainable agriculture, we share local knowledge to ensure that our farming techniques make the most of the land and resources. Gathering local grasses when food is plentiful and supplementing with feed when needed. We also encourage the raising of chickens, goats and pigs as they are more ‘fuel-efficient’ animals with better feed to protein conversion ratios. Vs. cows.
Goal 3: Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages
- Over 6.2 million malaria deaths have been averted between 2000 and 2015, primarily of children under five years of age in sub-Saharan Africa. The global malaria incidence rate has fallen by an estimated 37 per cent and the morality rates by 58 per cent
- In Tanzania, this can be greatly helped when a family has enough income to ensure that everyone can sleep under mosquito nets.
- Access to healthcare is much easier when there is money for transportation, medicine and food as a doctor’s visit could be an all day journey from a rural area. Our contingency fund built from the interest repayments allows women to access emergency funding for family health needs.
- Improved health for themselves and all family members is one of the most common changes reported out by the women in the project once their businesses begin supplying income.
There are at least five other Sustainable Goals that match the work done by the Bridge to Africa Project.
See, it really isn’t that hard to make change in the world. You need only remember to give where it matters.
Asante sana, rafiki. Thank you, friends.