1) No poverty – End poverty in all its forms everywhere
Like many of the development goals, this sounds like a massive destination we cannot reach, but that isn’t the case. Even a journey of a million miles starts with a single step – it starts with you. There are many ways you can help end poverty, but this is by far the easiest one – lend money to upcoming businesses or people in need and help them get up on their feet. Using platforms like kiva.org you can loan as little as $25 to a variety of people and causes from around the world – help a farmer from Uganda buy food for his cow and he’ll pay you back when he sells the milk, or fund materials for a shopkeeper from Ecuador who can pay you back when her store is up and running. It’s as simple as that – 97% of loans get repaid, so you most likely won’t lose any money, but you will have helped someone build themselves a steady income, which in turn will get them out of poverty.
2) Zero hunger – End hunger, achieve food security and improved nutrition, and promote sustainable agriculture
Ending world hunger doesn’t happen in a day, but there’s a lot you can do for the hungry in your area. Ideas include volunteering in a soup kitchen or donating leftover food, and many more will have a similar impact.
Another lesser-known goal listed under Zero Hunger is to double the agricultural productivity and incomes of small-scale food producers – so a great way to support this goal is to shop local. Instead of going to the supermarket, try the local farmer’s market or small locally owned shops.
3) Good health and well being – Ensure healthy lives and promote well-being for all at all ages
Good news happens slowly, and this is really the case with this goal. There’s a lot to do still, of course, but when comparing the current health state to the one in 1990, there are major developments all around the world. Maternal mortality has fallen by almost 50% since 1990, and many preventable diseases are slowly being eradicated, with percentages of illness and mortality dropping with every day that goes by.
Many categories fall under “well being” – anywhere from smoking habits to access to functioning, modern health care systems. Thus, there’s really a lot you can do to further this goal. If you’re looking for hands-on volunteering, you could volunteer in a free clinic or give lectures to teens about maintaining a healthy lifestyle. You could also promote and support one of the many organizations in this field – such as the Red Cross or Tobacco Free Kids, which each promote good health in their own way.
4) Quality education – Ensure inclusive and quality education for all and promote lifelong learning
Access to education benefits us in many other fields – educated people live longer, and so do their children, they have better chances of finding a good income source and fulfilling themselves, and they create a better society for all of us.
Quality education starts with you – as a student, as a parent or as a teacher, we all get a say in how we educate the next generations and what tools we give them to build our future.
If you’re a student – make the most of your education, and make sure your peers get to do so as well. If you see an inequality in your school, speak up! Notice students of color, girls or disabled students, make sure you, your friends and the school staff gives them the assistance they need to fulfill their potential to the fullest.
If you’re a teacher – pay attention to all of your students, not just the ones having a harder time or the ones excelling at school. Make sure to include all your students and give them all the attention they deserve and need.
If you’re neither – there’s still a lot you can do! Volunteer to teach a class at your community center; read stories or donate books at your local library or help start libraries abroad with projects like Accio Books; volunteer abroad in communities where there aren’t any educational programs – so many ways you can promote education to all.
The SDGs are a great choice for a Good Deeds Day project, and a wonderful way to get other organizations or companies with a mutual goal involved in your project. Looking for more ways you can help advance the Sustainable Development Goals? Check out parts two, three and four of this series for 12 other goals you can make a difference in!
Ready to make a difference? Pre-registration for Good Deeds Day is now open! Let us know what you’ll be doing to make the world a better place on April 7, 2019.