At the halfway point to the 2030 deadline of the Global Goals – we’re down at halftime. The upcoming UN General Assembly is a critical moment for action. With only 15% of the Goals on track, their promise of a better world for people and planet is in peril.
The number of people living in extreme poverty is increasing for the first time in a generation and hunger is now back at 2005 levels. The triple threat of Covid-19, conflict and the climate crisis have reversed years of hard-earned development progress, and this year alone, as many as 350 million people could suffer from food insecurity.
Humanitarian needs are greater than ever, inequalities have grown deeper and a continuing war on nature has catapulted us towards climate catastrophe. A fundamental shift is needed – in commitment, action and solidarity – and it is needed now!
That’s why last month we announced that we had teamed up with the UN Office for Partnerships for the launch of the Halftime Campaign, a global effort to reinvigorate and accelerate progress towards delivering the Goals. We are excited to finally unveil the activities we have planned to make sure that this September we deliver the most crucial halftime talk in history.
In support of the Sustainable Development Goals at Halftime, Project Everyone co-founder Richard Curtis has created a special new version of the famous ‘Inch by Inch’ locker room speech, delivered by Al Pacino in the Warner Bros. Pictures film Any Given Sunday.
The new cut of the scene puts it into the context of reaching ‘halftime’ for the Goals and the need for urgent action – so that, ‘inch by inch’, we can make the greatest second half comeback of all time.
We know that the solutions are out there to help us win in the second half. From harnessing the power of game-changing AI technologies, to reforming the global finance system – we have the power to achieve the Goals.
In some areas we have already seen incredible progress – including a record $1 trillion dedicated to transition to clean, fair and renewable energy, and the staggering scientific innovation at our fingertips, shown in the response to COVID-19.
We must continue to build on these advances – reforming policies to dismantle the systems that keep women sidelined, implementing safety nets like a living wage for all, and making sure the strategies already in place to create 400 million new jobs and social protection for 4 billion people become a reality.
The Halftime Campaign is calling on thought leaders from all sectors to show real commitment to unlocking these solutions and creating meaningful change – leaving no-one behind. Through strengthened political will, revitalised civil society engagement, and transformed business practices, this can become a reality.
The SDG Pavilion
To engage key players – from world leaders to business leaders and activists – renowned artist Es Devlin has designed the SDG Pavilion. Her unique art installation will be unveiled at the UN Headquarters in New York during high-level week of the UN General Assembly in just a few days time.
As part of this Es has assembled a cohort of cultural collaborators to bring each of the Goals to life – from award-winning novelist Elif Shafak to chef and culinary ambassador Pierre Thiam, the contributors are truly global.
Through 17 exhibits, the Pavilion explores where we are right now and how we can achieve the Goals by 2030. Keep an eye on our social channels for more about this in the coming days.
The SDG Pavilion is kicking off with an incredible ‘Halftime Show’ featuring contributions from world entertainment and global leaders. The show will be streamed around the world, so make sure you tune in at 19.00 EST on 18th September, here to watch live!
The Pavilion will also house the Halftime Talks, a collaborative mix of discussions, round tables, films, and artistic performances. All centred around the Global Goals, these sessions will bring together people from across the world to unlock solutions – from transforming the global finance system to harnessing the power of AI technologies, these game-changing ideas will help us all be on the winning team when we reach 2030.
Whilst progress towards achieving the SDGs has been too slow in the first half, there is still everything to play for. So, as we step into the second half, ask yourself: ‘What are you gonna do?’
Join the team at sdghalftime.org.