On 29 March 2017, Peru woke up with a state-declared National Emergency in the northern part of the country. The coast had been severely affected due to the floods caused by the phenomenon ‘El Niño Costero’, where more than 1,000,000 people were affected and 200,000 people fell victim at a national level, leading to one of the most serious crises the country has faced in the last few years.
One international UN Volunteer, ten community volunteers, and one UN Online Volunteer are running the Start-Up Choihona project, which has so far organized two national entrepreneurial competitions promoting innovation and youth employment. Quarterly competitions offer an opportunity for new entrepreneurs to present their unique business ideas to a panel of judges. Given the chance to pitch their ideas, Tajik entrepreneurs have the chance to get feedback on whether their business ideas could work and gain access to valuable networks of potential business partners and investors.
People around the world are facing an interconnected array of social, environmental and economic barriers to sustainable development. In this landscape, solutions for economic and human development require collaborative efforts by multiple sectors of society such as the private sector — a key player in the realisation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). When knowledge, technical expertise and innovative practices are applied to community investment, aligning economic development with human development, everybody wins.
Ms. Walsh commented, “What is exciting about the partnership with UNV and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) is that it enables young people to bring together the skills and knowledge learned through the Cisco Networking Academy programme and apply them to addressing real social problems and challenges in this region.”
The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) have an important focus on partnerships and have a vital function to achieve peace and development in the coming years. Partners in the private sector are certainly major stakeholders, and their involvement is now expanding much beyond charity. The private sector has a wealth of knowledge, expertise and implementation capacity that must be leveraged to find development solutions.