How a better world for all is within our reach with the Sustainable Development Goals

Changing the world won’t be easy…but, it IS possible.

In the last 20 years, more progress has been made to end poverty and save lives than at any other point in human history! How was this possible? Through the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), which were an unprecedented effort that united world leaders, governments and organizations in tackling some of the most pressing global issues by 2015.

While progress was made with the MDGs, there’s more to be done. From 2016 to 2030, 193 countries have agreed to 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) or #GlobalGoals. Drawing from the expertise of development organizations (including Plan International) and world leaders, and with input from children, youth and citizens across the globe, the SDGs were formed.

sdgs-what-are-the“The 17 Sustainable Development Goals are our shared vision of humanity and a social contract between the world’s leaders and the people,” shared the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. “They are a to-do list for people and planet, and a blueprint for success.”

As we mark the one-year anniversary of the adoption of the SDGs, we reflect on what global issues the goals aim to address and how they will create a better world for us all when they are achieve.

SEE ALSO: What are the Sustainable Development Goals and why should I care?

Leaving no one behind

The SDGs are ambitious – aiming to “leave no one behind” and reach the most vulnerable in both developing and developed countries. Because no country has achieved gender equality or ended poverty, the SDGs matter to every country and every person.

In far too many communities worldwide, girls often face the most discrimination – denied their right to education, forced into early marriage, or made victims of violence – simply, because they’re young and female. In Plan International’s programs around the world, we’re working to promote girls’ rights and end gender inequality – ensuring girls in some of the most disadvantaged situations are not left behind.

SEE ALSO: How empowering girls and women can change the world

Young girl with the message, “girls’ rights are human rights” overlayed.

We’re working to promote girls’ rights and gender equality around the world.

We spoke out during the development of the SDGs to ensure the rights of girls and women were prioritized, and as the world embarks on this shared journey to achieve these global goals, we’ll keep raising our voice for girls, women and the most vulnerable populations around the world.

What you can do to help change the world

We each have a role to play in creating a fairer, more sustainable and equal planet. Achieving the SDGs will take a united effort and long-term commitment from all of us– especially governments and world leaders. These goals belong to each and every one of us, and if we want to see an end to poverty, inequality and climate change, then let’s do our part to share and care about these #GlobalGoals!


Join activists, like Malala Yousafzai and Melinda Gates, and celebrities, like Emma Watson and Victoria Beckham, in championing a brighter future for everyone. Every action, no matter the size, can add up to big change!

Take action today: raise awareness about the Global Goals, find ways to make a difference in your community, remind our leaders about their commitment, be part of the online conversations, or get involved with us at Plan International to support global change.