It has been a year now since the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) – the successors to the Millennium Development Goals – were adopted. In January 2016, the 17 goals with 169 targets were officially mainstreamed with the hope of putting an end to poverty, reducing inequality and battling climate change between now and 2030. At the heart of the goals is a commitment to ensure that ‘no one is left behind’ and that no goal is considered unmet. Although we have witnessed huge progress in the fight against poverty and injustice, too many people – the most impoverished, those that are excluded, disadvantaged and at risk of violence and discrimination – still face terrible inequalities when it comes to accessing resources and rights. The world must focus on reaching these groups and ensuring they can make their voices heard if we are to achieve a better world for all.
Guided by Pope Francis’ encyclical Laudato Si, Care for our Common Home, CK galvanizes Catholic action in 25 Diocesan Caritas communities across Kenya to hold the government to account its commitments and to ensure that the voices of the poor spur the effective implementation of the SDGs so that no one is left behind.
CK operates under a complex environment with present time challenges such as Climate Change, high levels of poverty and unemployment amongst the youth, gender discrimination and humanitarian disasters such as drought and terrorism which pose unique challenges in our charitable work. Amid these challenges lies the potential to build on past achievements and with global partnership strive to reach out to millions of lives stuck in the cycle of poverty; to restore lost dignity, create capacities and opportunities to truly transform lives for the better. That remains our true call.
As key actors promoting social, economic and environmental development in Kenya; despite Pastoral work; Catholic Church in Kenya has immense duty to reflect and realign her work; familiarize themselves with the global development agenda under the 17 SDGs Framework and the Church documents such as the Pope’s encyclical ‘Laudato Si’ and any other documents addressing issues which involves the work of the Church. This will greatly help in addressing common challenges and winning global support through partnership.