'It starts with where you are and with what you have' - Judyannet Muchiri, NAYD social media editor

Monday, 12 June 2017

#NAYDSDGs Sierra Leone - Training to help team development of a Country Plan

Executive Summary
The United Nations in the year 2000 established the Millennium Development Goals to assist countries work toward those goals especially Africa, Caribbean and Pacific countries, to become middle level income countries. Unfortunately Sierra Leone was unable to meet the eight MDGs. We still continue to grapple as a nation; in September 2015 the United Nations further developed what is now referred to as the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which are seventeen. Sierra Leone has acceded to this document made a lot of commitments and has already aligned the SDGs to the national agenda called the Agenda for Prosperity.
The SDGs is a very powerful tool to be used for any country’s development agenda especially Sierra Leone that was decimated by the Ebola virus disease and its Gross Domestic Product reduced. The membership of the Network of African Youth for Development (NAYD) on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals Sierra Leone Chapter comprising nine (9) local Non-governmental Organizations, organized a one (1) day Training of Trainers workshop on Tuesday 13th December, 2016 at the Scripture Union Hall, 74 Pademba Road, Freetown to develop a Country Plan of Action and identify tools to monitor the SDGs in rural communities in Sierra Leone using young people’s organization.
The objective of the training was to empower the membership of NAYD SL to identify tools to monitor the Sustainable Development Goals in rural communities in Sierra Leone using young people’s organizations. The outcome of the training was to build a Country Plan of Action like other countries in the region have done.

The organizers of the event NAYD SL invited one of the architect of this fine document, former Director General of the United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), Dr. Kandeh Kolleh Yumkella as the keynote speaker and Chief Facilitators to build a Country Plan and identify tools to monitor SDG 7 i.e. Affordable and Clean Energy and SDG 2 i.e. Zero Hunger.

Introducing the keynote speaker, the Team Lead NAYD SL Chapter Thomas Pa Alie Babadie briefed his membership to take into consideration the importance of the SDGs into their organizations activities as this will help inform the public about the Sustainable Development Goals. Mr. Thomas Babadie also gave an overview of the network’s activities in the next three years and the composition of the membership of NAYD SL Chapter; he assured the membership of continuous engagements in 2017 on six (6) of the SDGs i.e.2, 3, 4,5,6,7and 17.

Dr. Kandeh Yumkella with cross section of Participants
Dr. Yumkella in his opening speech gave an overview of how a Country Plan is developed. He created a nexus between the eight (8) Millennium Development Goals and the seventeen (17) Sustainable Development Goals in which he was a key player with appointment from Mr. Ban Ki Moon, former United Nations Secretary General.

In his statement, Dr. Yumkella emphasized the importance of improved energy and agriculture which Africa and the world over are moving towards. He also underscored the importance of mainstreaming the SDGs and the national agenda as this will help cushion the problems Africa faces especially Sierra Leone, a post war country. Whilst speaking to participants, Dr. Yumkella made specific reference to Rwanda, a country referred to as a thousand miles on the hills. They do not have minerals but provide services which have attracted many players in the international scenes. Have very fast internet facilities.

Countries he quoted that have made tremendous strides in achieving the MDGs are Republic of Ghana, Botswana, South Africa, Mauritius, Rwanda and Seychelles. Dr. Yumkella also highlighted ways in which the continent can benefit in the implementation of the SDGs as it was with the five (5) Asian Tigers, who tailored the SDGs according to their culture and tradition.

The consultative braining storming was a maiden step to bring together cross section of Civil Societies and other stakeholders to deepened understanding on the essence of the SGDs aiming at leaving no one behind. Sierra Leone with no exception is one of the countries that have signed up and have made commitments for its implementation. It is expected that each country that have signed up to the SDGs must work to implement its.
Against this backdrop, the Network of African youth Development Sierra Leone chapter (NAYD-SL) want to undertake monitoring of the SDGs implementation to determine its achieved bench marks in Sierra Leone. This cannot be done without the adequate understanding on how they were crafted and for what purpose, who is responsible and who are they meant for. It is also important to know how to develop monitoring strategy and the exact tools fit for that purpose.
Dr.Kandeh Kolleh Yumkella giving an overview of the Country Plan

Consultative Brainstorming
The brain storming session was meant for Local Non-governmental Organization, university students and other stakeholders to deliberate the development of an activity plan for the monitoring of the SDGs in Sierra Leone. Prior to this, a statement was delivered by Dr. Kandeh Yumkela a crafter and one of the architect of the sustainable development goals, especially goal three (3) sustainable energy for all. The keynote speaker Dr. Kandeh Kolleh Yumkella in his statements highlighted that, he was part of the development of the SDGs and mentioned that, these goals were developed for countries to achieve these in the set time.
In his statement, he emphasized on the use of energy and also intimated participants that, the richer people need more raw materials from poor countries and this have destroyed the environments in poorer countries, he also said, the richer countries emit green house gases and this has affected Africa and for this reason the MDGs were needed for sustainable development.
In conclusion Dr. Kandeh informed participants that, the goals were originally 8 when it was first launched in year 2000 but were extended to 17 goals in year 2015. Among these goals energy is very important and has been referred to as the goals that interconnect with all other goals commonly called “NEXUS”, which he said, he will leave with us.
Plan international’s representative Mr. Joseph Konneh Program Support Manager, Field Operations highlighted Plan International’s thematic intervention for potential collaboration with NAYD-SL and these interventions include; Child Protection, Health, Education and Livelihoods.
He advised that, selected goals be targeted that specifically applies to Sierra Leone during the development of the strategic plan for the monitoring of SDGs in Sierra Leone.

Alignment of goals to MDAs
The exercise to align specific goals to MDAs as applicable to the scope of mandates and coverage of MDAs were carried out through group work that spans 45 munities. A detail of the work is seen below.
After plenary discussions, the following goals were agreed upon for the monitoring of the SDGs in Sierra Leone and they are as follows.
1.      Goal 7 Affordable energy
2.      Goal 2 Zero Hunger
3.      Goal 6 Clean water and sanitation
4.      Goal 3 Good health and wellbeing
5.      Goal 5 Gender equality
6.      Goal 4 Education
7.      Goal 17 Partnership on the goals
Goal 7
Min. of Energy, EDSA, Gbumbuna, Min. Agriculture, private sector on solar light and EPA.
Goal 2
Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Food Security, Food and Agricultural Organization, Non-Governmental Organizations, UN agencies, Farmer’s Associations, Ministry of Marine Resources.
Goal 6
Ministry of water Resources, Ministry of Health and Sanitation, Ministry of Education, Ministry of Energy, Non-Governmental Organizations and UN agencies.
Goal 3
Ministry of Health and Sanitation, Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Food Security,  Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, Ministry of Social welfare, Gender and Children’s Affairs, Nurses and Doctors.
Goal 5
Ministry of Social welfare, Gender and Children’s Affairs, Ministry of Youth Affairs, National Youth Commission, UN agencies, Local government, Human Rights Commission.
Goal 4
Ministry of Education, Technical Vocational Institutes and Universities, Local Councils, Education Committee and UN agencies.
Goal 17
All the above

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