These goals were agreed by almost 200 heads of states at the United Nations in 2015, with the plan that they would be achieved by 2030. However it now appears, we are not on track to meet this target and for that reason this decade from 2020-2030 is now being called the
'Decade of Action'
For years scientists have warned us that the way we live is not sustainable. So it is surprising that at this critical moment when action is called for we still seem to be hesitating, when we should be worried that the clock is counting down. The question we need to confront is: what is stopping many of us from committing ourselves fully with our actions to achieving these goals?
One answer to this dilemma may lie in the way we educate ourselves and others. On the one hand, we often think in silos where we separate subjects rather than highlighting the links between them. On the other hand, we underestimate the importance of our emotional understanding of what we learn and the strong connection between our emotions and our external behaviour. Dealing with serious and complex issues can very quickly lead us to feeling overwhelmed, undermining our own confidence in our ability to make a difference, making it harder to stay optimistic and engaged. We need to decide what the right type of engagement is for each of us individually, within our schools, organisations and communities.
Throughout human history people have used stories to share their wisdom, morals and hopes and through stories pass on deep intuitive understandings of what is right and wrong.
In this collaborative project traditional folktales from all over the world and many different cultures have been analysed and rewritten to help us connect to and embrace each of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals.
May anyone who reads them - ponder, discuss and retell - and come up with their own interpretation through creative problem solving and hands-on projects in all subjects!
The green economy is one of the fastest growing sectors in the world, there are an ever increasing number of ‘green jobs’ in law, engineering, medicine, IT and many other areas. Let our learning reflect and prepare us for this! We need the courage to get engaged and stay optimistic in spite of the complexities, to find creative solutions others have not, in our own environments as well as at national and global level.
Let the 17 SDGs be the guiding stars to our lives and that of future generations!