This week ONE is at the ICT4D conference in Nairobi to explore how disruptive technological innovation can help young people like Eva Tolage, her family and her generation to track progress against the Global Goals.
The truth is there is much rhetoric about serving those “left behind”, those on the margins or beyond. But in reality the most marginalised too often remain just that. While we have made much progress since the founding of ONE and since the birth of this millennium, we have so far still to go. Business as usual will help more girls like Eva survive, and that’s amazing….but not thrive. The development sector needs disruption and innovation at a rapid pace to keep pace with demographic and expectation revolutions.
Not all parts of the development ecosystem will like it. But at ONE we are impatient for this change. We have a data crisis that needs resolving, and we’re working on that. We have a gender equality challenge that needs resolving, and we’re working on that. We have health and agriculture connectivity and corruption challenges that need rapid change. All these are obstacles in the way of helping Eva and her classmates thrive.
At ONE we are keen to innovate with partners to ensure that those currently at the periphery are placed at the centre in reality not rhetoric, combining the latest technology with the oldest community organising skills to help those at the grassroots look the grasstops in the eye and demand change.
If we, from different sectors, organizations and walks of life come together we can put in place a system that allows people all over the world, in every community facing extreme poverty, to report and track progress against the Global Goals. We can be sure that we leverage the potential of technology to give those living in extreme poverty a voice and tools to hold all of us accountable for delivering against the promises made, as well as give governments the tools and capacity to respond better at a local level.
As the conference unfolds this week, we’ll be working with participants to answer this challenge. People living in extreme poverty have been waiting for their leaders to answer questions regarding access to modern energy, clean water, education, health services, decent work and the things needed to live safe and healthy lives and have the opportunity to reach their full potential. Let’s not make them wait any longer.
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