The Covid-19 crisis has turned everybody’s plans upside down and the European Sustainable Development Week is no exception. However, we firmly believe that sustainable development needs a rallying cry now more than ever.
While we recover from the crisis and work out what a world post-Covid-19 will look like, it is important to emphasize the way in which the principles of sustainable development and the Sustainable Development Goals can guide the way into a more sustainable, just, and resilient future. Therefore, the ESDW 2020 will be postponed to September 20 – 26, with a longer timeframe for events that lasts from 18 September – 08 October. This also gives everyone more time to come up with creative and safe ways in their activities to highlight the potential of sustainability.
However, the ESDW recognizes the importance that sustainable development has, especially during this time of crisis, and underlines the importance of not losing our focus on sustainable development in the present. Therefore, the ESDW would like to encourage activities that can safely take place under the given circumstances (e.g. virtual events, online activities, etc.) and that deliver relief, support, and “sharing and caring” responses to the crisis in the spirit of the SDGs. As we cannot know what regulations and safety measures will be in place in September, the ESDW’s focus will be broadened: we not only encourage physical events and activities (as long as they can be run safely), but also virtual events. In an increasingly digital world, the options to engage with sustainable development and the SDGs are enormous! In supporting the organization of digital events, the ESDW hopes to tap into the creative and innovative potential of people, organizations, governments and businesses to explore this new format, but more so to show Europe, and the world, that small actions can have a profound and lasting impact on sustainable development.
The Covid-19 crisis has brought to light the huge potential of communities when they come together and work towards a common objective. The ESDW provides an opportunity to strengthen those ties between ordinary people and between people and organizations to enable communities to contribute to sustainable development in their country and internationally!
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Contact: Eric Mulholland, ESDW Office, Email: firstname.lastname@example.org