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1000 Days Left to Meet Poverty Goals

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08 April 2013

 

Friday April 5th marked 1000 days until the deadline for completion of the global goals to halve extreme poverty by 2015.

The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) were agreed by 182 nations in 2000 and promised to halve hunger, get all children into school, provide clean water and sanitation for millions, tackle diseases like malaria and greatly improve maternal health.

Christian leaders from many parts of the world have written an open letter to remind governments of the commitment.

They want to refocus public and political attention on the progress that still needs to be made if the eight MDGs are to be realised by the 2015 deadline. Over 60 religious leaders from across the G8 nations and from a range of faith backgrounds have signed the letter, including The Archbishop of Canterbury, His Grace the Rt Revd Justin Welby.

The letter points out the overall poverty goal has been met ahead of time, largely due to China’s economic growth. But it goes on to say, “Hunger remains a global challenge with some 868 million people going hungry every day. Maternal mortality might be falling by 1% per annum, but this rate is below the 5% annual improvement needed.”

Dr Charles Reed, Foreign Policy Advisor for the Church of England is pleased that social networking will complement the letter. He hopes thousands of tweets (#1000DaysToGo) about the MDGs will be sent on April 5th to leaders ahead of the G8 meeting in June. He says, “Eight years ago, all the G8 leaders made commitments on aid. But despite some progress, we are still $19 billion short in our giving.”

In 2000 nations around the world promised to “spare no effort to free our fellow men, women and children from the abject and dehumanizing conditions of extreme poverty, to which more than a billion of them are currently subjected.” (UN Millennium Declaration.) With 1000 days till 2015, many Christian groups campaigning on the MDGs want to affirm the values and principles of the Millennium Declaration and call for renewed action.

Joel Edwards, International Director of Micah Challenge said this week, “Meeting the MDGs is possible. Even in hard times we should not waiver from our promise to the poorest people in the world. If we tackle waste and corruption, we could free up billions, more than enough to meet the MDGs.”

End.

This is a media release from Micah Challenge. For full news see here.