Placing gender equality as one of the top priorities of Agenda 2030

24 March 2017
Karol Alejandra Arámbula Carrillo
In 2014, Karol Alejandra Arámbula Carrillo led a project as a UN Online Volunteer in partnership with The Red Elephant Foundation, based in India, the UNV Online Volunteering service and the MY World Global Survey on the Post-2015 Development Agenda, with the objective to position gender equality as one of the top priorities of international development.
UN Online Volunteer Karol Alejandra Arámbula Carrillo at the Global Festival of Ideas for Sustainable Development that took place in Bonn in March 2017.
UN Online Volunteer Karol Alejandra Arámbula Carrillo at the Global Festival of Ideas for Sustainable Development that took place in Bonn in March 2017. (UNV, 2017)

Karol Alejandra Arámbula Carrillo (Mexico) has been a UN Online Volunteer since 2011. One of her motivations to join UNV’s Online Volunteering service was the desire to help organisations in other countries carry out their work, especially in the field of gender equality. 

In 2014, she led a project as a UN Online Volunteer in partnership with The Red Elephant Foundation, based in India, the UNV Online Volunteering service and the MY World Global Survey on the Post-2015 Development Agenda, with the objective to position gender equality as one of the top priorities of international development.

The MY World Global Survey was developed with the goal to give people across the world a platform to express their opinion on which topics are the most important to be included in a new global agenda for sustainable development beyond 2015.

“Together with 200 online volunteers from 100 countries, we worked on the promotion of online and offline voting in the MY World Global Survey, making sure we reached the most vulnerable and isolated communities,” Karol explains. “These online volunteers in turn mobilised on-site volunteers to allow people to participate in the MY World Survey.”

The volunteers were asked to create awareness on the post-2015 process among their family members, colleagues and friends, and to encourage offline voting among citizens of their respective countries, especially in communities where there is limited Internet access.

“We also asked volunteers to highlight the importance of positioning gender equality as one of the top priorities of international development, talking about the different social, political, economic and cultural challenges women face around the world,” Karol points out.

We also asked volunteers to highlight the importance of positioning gender equality as one of the top priorities of international development, talking about the different social, political, economic and cultural challenges women face around the world.

Out of almost 5,000 MY World votes collected through this project, 3,600 marked equality between men and women as their top priority for the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. “In the 21st century, it is well overdue that we all have the same opportunities, regardless of being born a man or a woman,” Karol says.

“This project allowed me to interact with many people through the UNV Online Volunteering platform, and this year it gave me the chance to participate in the Global Festival of Ideas for Sustainable Development, as the SDG campaign here in Bonn invited me to participate in the Festival to talk about my work on MY World,” Karol explains.

Online volunteering has provided Karol with valuable educational experience. In the six years that she has served as a UN Online Volunteer, she has been involved in many assignments, carrying out translations, research, and awareness-raising campaigns, among others, serving with a wide range of entities, from community-based organisations at the local level up to intergovernmental bodies. 

Karol thinks that there is often a misconception about what online volunteering means, with people thinking that it cannot work properly. “I think that my work has helped to change this perception, showing that online volunteering is possible and effective – different people in different places can have the same passion for a cause, and the will and time to work together towards the same objective, online.”