Sustainable Development Goals

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Sustainable Development Goals

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County-wide

The 25th September marks an important milestone for the Sustainable Development Goals. It is fifth anniversary of the their agreement. People may be familiar with the distinctive visuals around these goals presented as a series of brightly coloured squares, but what do they actually mean? In its simplest terms it is a roadmap to a better, more inclusive and equitable world and aims to bring every single person on this journey, a plan of action for people, planet, prosperity, peace and partnership. Every country has signed up to the SDGs and as we continue to live with Covid the SDGs have never been more important.

Many public and private sector organizations are aligning themselves with the SDGs and Meath County Council are following in the footsteps of Carlow County Council who participated in the first round of the Department of Communication, Climate Action and Environment SDG Champions initiative last year.

Chief Executive Jackie Maguire stated “now is the time for us, as an organization, to embrace the SDGs and embed them into our services, projects and actions, and to include them in policy making going forward. There are parallels between Covid, the SDGs and the services we now provide as a result of Covid, as we remain #InThisTogether we strive to protect and help the most vulnerable and create a resilient and inclusive environment.As an organization we can actively promote the SDGs to our many customers and citizens, to lead by example”.

Ms Maguire further stated “The SDGs will sit under the remit of the Climate Action Team who have already started to incorporate the goals into their awareness work around the climate crisis. This team will now be the Climate Action and SDG Team, we believe we are the first local authority to assign the goals to a dedicated team and section”. Caroline Corrigan, Climate Action and SDG Officer stated “We have an opportunity to create awareness around the SDGs with the many customers we engage with and show case how individuals, communities and businesses can take practical steps to achieving the goals. It can seem overwhelming sometimes and people may question how they, as an individual, can be a changemaker for the goals, but as with our climate action message we believe every little action matters and collectively we can achieve much.”

Ms Corrigan also stated “our first step in the SDG journey was to look at ourselves as an organization and how we can instill the SDGs into our organization culture. To do this we examined our Corporate Plan which sets out our mission and vision for County Meath, our core values and our engagement with customers and stakeholders. An exercise was undertaken aligning the SDGs to the supporting strategies of the Corporate Plan to ascertain which SDGs we can have the most impact on.”

Cathaoirleach of Meath County Council and Chair of the Climate Action Forum, Cllr. David Gilroy commented “This is a wonderful opportunity to build on the goodwill and togetherness living with Covid has produced within our county and communities, we must adjust to a new ‘normal’ as we start the Covid recovery and there is no reason why the SDGs can’t be at the heart of this. We can bring the ethos and language of the SDGs into daily life and working together we can bring the SDGs down to a local level, into our communities to create a better and more resilient environment for everyone to enjoy. On behalf of our councilor led Climate Action Forum I can confirm we will endeavor to promote the SDGs in our many interactions with constituents.”

Concluding, Ms Maguire said “There are no doubt we are going through challenging times but working towards the SDGs allows us to build back a better world, one where we can develop  sustainably, protect our environment and be inclusive and resilient.”