Many of us take these two terms easily, we say them but we do not actually mean them or we do not embody them the same way we wear gloves. To care and to share are not literal, they actually mean something and are to be made part of our culture. Thus, when I see my neighbor not studying and spending his or her time in the street, I should care; When I see a hungry kid and I have a bit more than what I need I should share; if someone is ill and cannot afford medical treatment, I must try to either help if I know about medicine, or pay to treat the person; if my neighborhood is filthy and require care, I should work on cleaning it, if the water is not drinkable, I would do something about it; if I see the industry in my country ruining the beaches, I will impose strict rules so we have fish for our fourth and sixth generation, and so on and so forth.
I am an individual, I feel that all of us as individuals have the capacity to do one or all of the above; these are the basic necessities that all the nations decided that it should eradicate by 2015. We are now in 2015! so look around and tell me if you can see any of the symptoms I had mentioned in the first paragraph? If you do, then the nations had failed.
A bit of history on these Millennium development goals are below, but before one reads the report, one needs to know what the western countries had done in order to remove all of these obstacles that can deter the development of the human beings. Every school and every university had started a unit to promote these goals, choosing students and volunteers to work on projects that will help alleviate poverty and the other symptoms associated with it. So they helped in building homes, digging toilettes, working on generating drinkable water, educating girls, building new schools and so on. However, none of the universities and the schools in the Arab world had done a similar thing. I feel that these millennium development goals could have and would have been achieved if all the human beings in the world had adopted them as part of their “Caring and Sharing” philosophy; if every principal in every school decided that its his or her role to educate the children in that school about this philosophy, no neighborhoods would be suffering. If every University dean made it part of his role to talk about these goals and apply them, we would have achieved these goals easily. Pressure groups and lobbyists would be doing a great work as well as students, artists, engineers, teachers, doctors, mothers and fathers would make it part of their daily rituals to alleviate these pimples from the face of humanity. Only if.
The goals were not achieved because we didn’t adopt them, and they will fail more if we do not start taking our world seriously. Now the UN wants to do something about it, so we are all given a new period. Lets start working on it brick by brick, start with your neighborhoods and start with the students.
The Millennium Project:
The largest gathering of world leaders in history “The Millennium Summit” in September 2000 adopted the UN Millennium Declaration, committing their nations to a new global partnership to reduce extreme poverty and setting a series of time-bound targets with deadline of 2015, which is 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 the basic human rights.
The Millennium Development Goals:
Goal 1: Eradicate Extreme Hunger and Poverty
- Halve the proportion of people between 1990 & 2015 whose income is less than $1.25 a day.
- Halve the proportion of people who suffer from hunger.
Goal 2: Achieve Universal Primary Education
- Ensure that by 2015, children everywhere, both boys and girls will be able to complete a full course of primary schooling.
Goal 3: Promote Gender Equality and Empower Women
- Eliminate gender inequality in all levels of education preferably by 2005 but no later than 2015.
Goal 4: Reduce Child Mortality
- Reduce by two-thirds mortality rate of child below the age of five.
Goal 5: Improve Maternal Health
- Reduce the maternal mortality rate by three-quarters.
Goal 6: Combat HIV/AIDS, Malaria and other diseases
- Have stopped by 2015 and begun to reverse the speed of HIV/AIDS
- Have stopped by 2015 and begun to reverse the incidence of malaria and other major diseases
Goal 7: Ensure Environmental Sustainability
- Integrate the principles of sustainable development into country policies and programs and reverse the loss of environmental resources.
- Halve the proportion of people without sustainable access to safe drinking water and basic sanitation by 2015.
- To achieve a significant improvement in the lives of at least 100 million slum dwellers.
Goal 8: Develop a Global Partnership for Development
- To develop an open, rule based, predictable, nondiscriminatory trading and financial system that includes a commitment to good governance, development and poverty reduction both nationally and internationally
- Address the special needs of the Least Developed Countries.
- Deal comprehensively with the debt problems of developing countries through national and international measures in order to make debt sustainable in the long term.
Extreme poverty has declined significantly over the last two decades. In 1990, nearly half of the population in the developing world lived on less than $1.25 a day; that proportion dropped to 14 per cent in 2015.
- Globally, the number of people living in extreme poverty has declined by more than half, falling from 1.9 billion in 1990 to 836 million in 2015. Most progress has occurred since 2000.
- The number of people in the working middle class—living on more than $4 a day—has almost tripled between 1991 and 2015. This group now makes up half the workforce in the developing regions, up from just 18 per cent in 1991.
- The proportion of undernourished people in the developing regions has fallen by almost half since 1990, from 23.3 per cent in 1990–1992 to 12.9 per cent in 2014–2016.
- The primary school net enrolment rate in the developing regions has reached 91 per cent in 2015, up from 83 per cent in 2000.
- The number of out-of-school children of primary school age worldwide has fallen by almost half, to an estimated 57 million in 2015, down from 100 million in 2000.
- Sub-Saharan Africa has had the best record of improvement in primary education of any region since the MDGs were established. The region achieved a 20 percentage point increase in the net enrolment rate from 2000 to 2015, compared to a gain of 8 percentage points between 1990 and 2000.
- The literacy rate among youth aged 15 to 24 has increased globally from 83 per cent to 91 per cent between 1990 and 2015. The gap between women and men has narrowed
- Many more girls are now in school compared to 15 years ago. The developing regions as a whole have achieved the target to eliminate gender disparity in primary, secondary and tertiary education.
- In Southern Asia, only 74 girls were enrolled in primary school for every 100 boys in 1990. Today, 103 girls are enrolled for every 100 boys.
- Women now make up 41 per cent of paid workers outside the agricultural sector, an increase from 35 per cent in 1990.
- Between 1991 and 2015, the proportion of women in vulnerable employment as a share of total female employment has declined 13 percentage points. In contrast, vulnerable employment among men fell by 9 percentage points.
- Women have gained ground in parliamentary representation in nearly 90 per cent of the 174 countries with data over the past 20 years. The average proportion of women in parliament has nearly doubled during the same period. Yet still only one in five members are women.
- The global under-five mortality rate has declined by more than half, dropping from 90 to 43 deaths per 1,000 live births between 1990 and 2015.
- Despite population growth in the developing regions, the number of deaths of children under five has declined from 12.7 million in 1990 to almost 6 million in 2015 globally.
- Since the early 1990s, the rate of reduction of under-five mortality has more than tripled globally. • In sub-Saharan Africa, the annual rate of reduction of under-five mortality was over five times faster during 2005–2013 than it was during 1990–1995.
- Measles vaccination helped prevent nearly 15.6 million deaths between 2000 and 2013. The number of globally reported measles cases declined by 67 per cent for the same period.
- About 84 per cent of children worldwide received at least one dose of measles containing vaccine in 2013, up from 73 per cent in 2000.
- Since 1990, the maternal mortality ratio has declined by 45 per cent worldwide, and most of the reduction has occurred since 2000.
- In Southern Asia, the maternal mortality ratio declined by 64 per cent between 1990 and 2013, and in sub-Saharan Africa it fell by 49 per cent.
- More than 71 per cent of births were assisted by skilled health personnel globally in 2014, an increase from 59 per cent in 1990.
- In Northern Africa, the proportion of pregnant women who received four or more antenatal visits increased from 50 per cent to 89 percent between 1990 and 2014.
- Contraceptive prevalence among women aged 15 to 49, married or in a union, increased from 55 per cent in 1990 worldwide to 64 per cent in 2015.
- New HIV infections fell by approximately 40 per cent between 2000 and 2013, from an estimated 3.5 million cases to 2.1 million.
- By June 2014, 13.6 million people living with HIV were receiving antiretroviral therapy (ART) globally, an immense increase from just 800,000 in 2003. ART averted 7.6 million deaths from AIDS between 1995 and 2013.
- Over 6.2 million malaria deaths have been averted between 2000 and 2015, primarily of children under five years of age in sub-Saharan Africa. The global malaria incidence rate has fallen by an estimated 37 per cent and the mortality rate by 58 per cent.
- More than 900 million insecticide-treated mosquito nets were delivered to malaria-endemic countries in sub-Saharan Africa between 2004 and 2014.
- Between 2000 and 2013, tuberculosis prevention, diagnosis and treatment interventions saved an estimated 37 million lives. The tuberculosis mortality rate fell by 45 per cent and the prevalence rate by 41 per cent between 1990 and 2013.
- Ozone-depleting substances have been virtually eliminated since 1990, and the ozone layer is expected to recover by the middle of this century.
- Terrestrial and marine protected areas in many regions have increased substantially since 1990. In Latin America and the Caribbean, coverage of terrestrial protected areas rose from 8.8 per cent to 23.4 per cent between 1990 and 2014.
- In 2015, 91 per cent of the global population is using an improved drinking water source, compared to 76 per cent in 1990.
- Of the 2.6 billion people who have gained access to improved drinking water since 1990, 1.9 billion gained access to piped drinking water on premises. Over half of the global population (58 per cent) now enjoys this higher level of service.
- Globally, 147 countries have met the drinking water target, 95 countries have met the sanitation target and 77 countries have met both.
- Worldwide, 2.1 billion people have gained access to improved sanitation. The proportion of people practicing open defecation has fallen almost by half since 1990.
- The proportion of urban population living in slums in the developing regions fell from approximately 39.4 per cent in 2000 to 29.7 per cent in 2014.
- Official development assistance from developed countries increased by 66 per cent in real terms between 2000 and 2014, reaching $135.2 billion.
- In 2014, Denmark, Luxembourg, Norway, Sweden and the United Kingdom continued to exceed the United Nations official development assistance target of 0.7 per cent of gross national income.
- In 2014, 79 per cent of imports from developing to developed countries were admitted duty free, up from 65 per cent in 2000.
- The proportion of external debt service to export revenue in developing countries fell from 12 per cent in 2000 to 3 per cent in 2013.
- As of 2015, 95 per cent of the world’s population is covered by a mobile-cellular signal.
- The number of mobile-cellular subscriptions has grown almost tenfold in the last 15 years, from 738 million in 2000 to over 7 billion in 2015.
- Internet penetration has grown from just over 6 per cent of the world’s population in 2000 to 43 per cent in 2015. As a result, 3.2 billion people are linked to a global network of content and applications.
Despite many successes, the poorest and most vulnerable people are left behind:
- Gender inequality persists
- Big gap exists between the households of the poorest and the richest and also between rural and urban areas
- Poor people suffer the most from the climate change and environmental degradation
- Conflicts remain the biggest threat to human development
- Despite enormous progress, even today, millions of people still live in poverty and suffer from hunger