Millennium Development Goals by 2015, have Your Say here!


un water vote

Did you know that diarrhea is the second leading cause of death among children under five in the world. Around 1.5 million deaths each year – nearly one in five – are caused by diarrhea. It kills more children than malaria, AIDS, and measles combined.

Should access to clean water and sanitation be a priority for world leaders in the next development goals?

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Millennium Development Goals, an Introduction

Post-2015-Development-Agenda-What-it-Means-and-How-to-Get-Involved_mediumFor many industrialized nations, poverty, child mortality, poor maternal health, and rampant disease are typically issues of the past. Science, medicine, research and technology have allowed many countries to eradicate numerous serious issues that plague third world nations and developing countries. And while many people believe the human plight has improved, the sad reality is millions of people around the globe live in such absolute misery that when everyday people are faced with the statistics, they are completely shocked and dismayed.

In order to ameliorate this ever-growing global crisis, in September 2000, heads-of-state from all over the world agreed to take positive steps to commit to a plan of action that would significantly reduce the suffering. The combined plan resulted in what is referred to as the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). According to the IRC (International Water and Sanitation Centre), “the MDGs stand for a renewed commitment to overcome persistent poverty and address many of the most enduring failures of human development. Halving by 2015, the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation”.

Safe drinking water is important on so many levels. Without water, people cannot survive. And if they have water but it is contaminated, disease and ultimately death are the results.

Likewise, if their animals are drinking unsafe water, the food supply is tainted or the animals die before the people can eat them. Then the people die of hunger. Furthermore, child mortality is high because the bodies of babies and young children do not have the opportunity to adequately develop.

Thus, safe water alone solves many issues.

Consequently, the Millennium Development Goals include eight broad goals, each with specific targets for improving the level of misery and suffering experienced everyday by millions.

The eight goals are named as follows:

  • Poverty and Hunger
  • Education
  • Gender Equality
  • Child Mortality
  • Maternal Health
  • Combat Disease
  • Environment
  • Global Partnership

As one can clearly see “poverty and hunger” is the number one issue, as the World Bank states that, “that one-point-four (1.4) billion people in developing countries were living in extreme poverty in 2005… using a new threshold for extreme poverty now set at (one dollar and twenty-five cents) $1.25 a day”.

Here is where another fallacy occurs in the minds of everyday people. It is thought that others make small amounts of money due to their country’s economic conditions, thus allowing them to live comfortably or at least adequately. On the contrary, while some of those countries have a low cost of living, most do not and so its people are forced to rely on very little, creating widespread poverty and hunger.


Achieving the Millennium Development Goals

More than one billion people — one-sixth of the world’s population — still live in extreme poverty, lacking the safe water, proper nutrition, basic health care and social services needed to survive. This means a single episode of disease, an ill-timed pregnancy, a drought or a crop-destroying pest can be the difference between life and death. In many of the poorest countries, life expectancy is half of that in the high-income world-40 years instead of 80 years.

The consequences of this poverty reach far beyond the afflicted societies. Poverty, inequality and disease are chief causes of violent conflict, civil war and state failures. A world with extreme poverty is a world of insecurity.

There is still time to achieve the Millennium Development Goals in the poorest countries, but the window of opportunity is closing. Fortunately, major global policy breakthroughs happened in 2005 to help get the world’s poorest countries on track to meeting the Goals. This included the 2005 World Summit agreement in which every country committed to adopt its own national strategy to achieve the Millennium Development Goals. It also included the G8 commitment to double development assistance to Africa by 2010.

In conclusion, the targets set forth by the Millennium Development Goals should guide all industrialized and financially able nations to combat issues of great importance to the world.

What they are


At the Millennium Summit in September 2000 the largest gathering of world leaders in history adopted the UN Millennium Declaration, committing their nations to a new global partnership to reduce extreme poverty and setting out a series of time-bound targets, with a deadline of 2015, that have become known as the Millennium Development Goals.

The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are the world’s time-bound and quantified targets for addressing extreme poverty in its many dimensions-income poverty, hunger, disease, lack of adequate shelter, and exclusion-while promoting gender equality, education, and environmental sustainability. They are also basic human rights-the rights of each person on the planet to health, education, shelter, and security.


The Millennium Project has recommended a global strategy to help nations turn the tide against extreme poverty.

Using the targets outlined in the Millennium Development Goals, the Project’s policy recommendations center on:

Planning for the 2015 time horizon

Pursuing the Millennium Development Goals as minimum policy targets in developing countries

Specifying the ways donor countries need to follow through on their aid, trade and debt relief commitments to coherently support the world’s poorest countries to achieve the Millennium Development Goals.

The core recommendation of the Millennium Project is that the Millennium Development Goals must be at the center of national and international poverty reduction strategies, and these strategies must focus on tackling the practical ground-level challenges of development.

For this to happen, developing countries need to conduct rigorous “needs assessments” to identify where they stand on the Goals and what interventions need to be in place in order to get on track for 2015.

In 2004, the Project began working with the UN system in selected “pilot countries“- Dominican Republic, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Senegal, Tajikistan and Yemen – to help identify the best ways to integrate Millennium Development Goal targets and timelines into their national strategies to reduce poverty. The aim was for these national strategies to serve as models for similar undertakings in developing countries throughout the world.

African-HealthThe Project continued to work with these and other developing countries to help identify the practical challenges each one faces en route to achieving the Millennium Development Goals by 2015, such as: how many mothers need access to health clinics; how many children need immunizations; how many teachers should be in every district; how many roads need to be built; how many water pumps should be installed and so on.

Backed with tried-and-true examples of what is already working to combat the many faces of poverty, Investing in Development presents concrete strategies for scaling-up throughout the developing world. The UN Millennium Project’s findings demonstrate that through developing countries’ pursuit of “MDG-based poverty reduction strategies,” matched with fulfillment of the 0.7 pledge made by developed countries, the Millennium Development Goals can still be achieved.

All countries can thereby follow through on the agreement for a “global development partnership” that forms the 8th Millennium Development Goal. Loads of world leaders like President Obama, President Clinton, UAE Ambassador Al Otaiba, Herman van Rompuy and Angela Merckel have made positive comments on them, we hope the importance of the task at hand helps these leaders make their mark.

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