These ideas light up ideas for a bright future
Gift knows her solar light did more than simply light up her home near Kampala, Uganda. Her solar light gave her the freedom to breastfeed at night, and to navigate the latrines. It meant she no longer had to buy batteries to power torches; instead, the money was used to start her own business, and save to buy her own plot of land. Her solar light has electrified the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in Uganda, and is brightening the otherwise challenged trajectory of the 2030 Agenda.
Gift received her solar light from Let There Be Light International, an NGO working in partnership with the Ugandan government, which is currently implementing Safe Births + Healthy Homes initiative. This initiative promises to improve maternal and infant health by solar-electrifying rural health clinics and by donating solar lights to all infants born in the electrified clinics. It has benefitted Gift not only during childbirth, but in the long-term through improved health and social outcomes for her family.
The simple addition of a solar-light offers a renewable source of inspiration for creative solutions to the global crises the world is facing today. Accelerated action on the implementation of the SDGs will be an investment in the coming generation and the sustainability of humankind.
Sustainable progress towards not just the 2030 Agenda, but the maintenance of an equitable world, requires an ability to produce creative solutions in response to problems arising in a constantly changing world. To address this, Siemens Stiftung has set up an education project to ensure that a renewable source of solutions can be generated now and in the future. “Design Thinking in STEM” is a design-based training program that lights up ideas to respond to a future of complex challenges. COVID-19 is but one of the global crises which requires creative problem solving to ensure the solutions to social and economic challenges are equitable and sustainable.
These two Accelerated Actions for the SDGs, from diverse sectors and regions, demonstrates that sustainability is both achievable and necessary. In Uganda, the change made by a single light shows that targeted action to implement the global goals can and must be taken by everyone, everywhere. With ideas like these, the future looks bright.