30 September 2015 – World leaders formally committed to 17 global goals to achieve three extraordinary things in the next 15 years : end extreme poverty, fight inequality and injustice and fix climate change.

“It is not just the direction of policy for the next 15 years that has been adopted by governments but the legacy that we will leave to our children and the planet for generations to come.  Lets’ not make a mess of the opportunity now and accelerate action.”

Ignacio Packer, Secretary General Terre des Hommes.

Nearly 15 years ago, world leaders developed the Millennium Development Goals, ambitious objectives to be achieved by 2015 that would realize a brighter future for all. While collective efforts to achieve those goals have yielded gains worldwide, millions of the world’s most vulnerable children still need to be reached.

A special session on 25th-27th September 2015 of the United Nations General Assembly formally adopted the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set out in the document “Transforming Our World: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”.  This agenda will guide the allocation of billions of dollars in international assistance over the next 15 years.

In a focused way, over the last four years, Terre des Hommes has contributed to the process leading to these Sustainable Development Goals.  The process has been paved with committed contributions from Terre des Hommes within alliances and, at occasion, with leading roles in capitals, in Brussels, in Geneva and in New York.

Children and especially the most disadvantaged are at the heart of the new global goals and in need of action.

 The UN General Assembly decision marks the end of a process and has now to be translated into action.  Millions have already taken action to end poverty, inequality and climate change.  More of course is needed to make the urgently needed difference.  In addition to its operational action in 68 countries, Terre des Hommes is advocating for the translation into further action.  Here are some recent examples of Terre des Hommes’ advocacy contributions:

A critical accompanying framework for global monitoring

Although the goals have been agreed, how the world measures progress is still to be decided. A critical accompanying framework for global monitoring is being developed by the Inter-Agency Expert Group on the SDGs. NGOs amongst which Terre des Hommes and other civil society bodies are giving their views on the ‘Indicators’ which will make up the monitoring framework and allow progress against the goals to be assessed.

UN urged to ensure SDG indicators count world’s most vulnerable children

In a joint open letter to the Inter-Agency Expert Group, child right organisations have appealed to the UN to ensure that children living outside of households and/or without parental care are included in the monitoring framework.

Over thirty organisations are signatories besides Terre des Hommes, including SOS Children’s Villages, the Better Care Network, Child Fund Alliance, among others. The final set of indicators is expected to be completed by early 2016.

Six key recommendations prepared for the Global Forum on Migration and Development to leave no child behind

A series of six bridging papers looking at different points of the 5-year Action Plan for Collaboration from a child rights perspective have been drafted by Terre des Hommes.  The aim is to examine the specificities affecting children in the context of migration and inform more coherent approaches from a child rights standpoint. It has been prepared to provide input for the Civil Society Days of the Global Forum on Migration and Development (Istanbul, Turkey, 12 to 13 October 2015).

One of the bridging documents “Migration and development in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development: A child rights perspective provides six key recommendations :

  1. No matter Agenda 2030migration status, origin, ethnic background or nationality, all children should have their rights respected, fulfilled and implemented. They should not be denied being part of implementation of the 2030 Development Agenda.
  1. Indicators of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) must be disaggregated by migration status in a way that grants an explicit focus on equity.
  1. Non-mainstream data and innovative approaches must be developed to count everyone. A special attention should be given to the more invisible groups of children as we find within the children in the context of migration.
  1. Civil society representation – and specifically to voice the concerns for children in the context of migration – is urgently need to be considered as one of the key stakeholder groups both within the Global Partnership and within the Fund to End Violence Against Children. The Partnership and the Fund aim at delivering on the violence against children targets.
  1. Adequate longer-term development and resilience-based funding, is needed to help ease the burden on neighboring states in supporting refugees of which, in many contexts, 50% are children. Increased solidarity and responsibility sharing by other countries is also needed to allow refugees to find protection beyond the immediate neighboring region.
  1. Economic evaluations of the care delivered to children in the context of migration should inform policies to implement the child focused targets of the SDGs on the long term economic effects of not addressing the challenges adequately.

“I feel a strong sense of hope derived from the “2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development”.  However, the new vision of a sustainable development, integrated, universal, human rights-based, environmentally sound, gender-sensitive, and people centered still has to go through the manifestation of courage to change.  We cannot afford another failed approach.  Words have to be translated into action. Urgently.”

Ignacio Packer, Secretary General of Terre des Hommes and 2015 Chair of the Civil Society Days of the Global Forum on Migration and Development.

Every child grows up free from violence and exploitation

The 2030 Development Agenda calls for a world “which invests in its children and in which every child grows up free from violence and exploitation,” and sets out clear commitments to end violence against children in target 16.2. and related targets.

Within the Migration and Development “Post 2015 Indicators subgroup”, Terre des Hommes focuses its contribution on target 16.2.  TDH bridges between civil society groups working on the targets related to violence against children with a special focus on children in the context of migration.

A letter was sent to targeted Ministers and Ambassadors requesting their explicit endorsement of the migrant-related goals and targets, and their commitment to translate these into national policies and budgets.

Protecting the liberty of migrant children

New York, 30th September 2015.  International Detention Coalition, the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights, and the Permanent Mission of Guatemala are holding a panel, film screening, reception and art show, “Protecting the Liberty of Migrant Children”. This event, following the UN SG Summit on 2030 Development Agenda, is co-sponsored by Destination Unknown, Terre des Hommes, Step it Up, United Methodist Women, Women & Global Migration Working Group, Caritas,  and End Immigration Dentention of Children.