"Friday, April 5th, will mark 1,000 days to the end of 2015 – the deadline for achieving the goals [Millennium Development Goals]. This moment provides an opportunity to raise awareness and galvanize action. The UN system will mobilize on that day and throughout the period ahead to accelerate our efforts." Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon noted in remarks to a meeting of the bloc of developing nations known as the Group of 77 and China.
Citizens from all over the world are being asked to help shape the future global development agenda through their participation in the United Nations survey 'MY World', which allows them to vote on issues they believe are priorities and should be addressed by world leaders.
Votes can be submitted online, and in some countries by mobile phone or through offline ballots. Results from the survey will be shared with Mr. Ban, his High-level Panel on the Post-2015 Development Agenda, and world leaders.
Thousands of people from 189 countries have already voted during an initial roll-out period, and preliminary results show education is the issue that people think is most important for improving their lives. An honest and responsive government, health, water, sanitation and job and food security have also been considered major priorities.
These inputs, along with those from across the UN system and beyond, including the outcomes of consultations going on worldwide and the voices of businesses, academia and the scientific community, will feed into the work of the Panel, which will present its report in May.
In a video message, Mr Ban is encouraging the public to participate. "Vote and tell us what issues matter most to you and your family. Make a difference. Mark a difference," he said.
Humanitarian activist Mia Farrow, Brazilian soccer player Marta Vieira da Silva, marathon champion Paul Tergat, and Indian actor and producer Aamir Khan, have also joined mobilization efforts to increase public participation in the survey.
Through creative online and offline methods, MY World asks individuals which six of sixteen possible issues they think would make the most difference to their lives. The sixteen issues have been built up from the priorities expressed by poor people in existing research and polling exercises and they cover the existing Millennium Development Goals, plus issues of sustainability, security, governance and transparency.
From now until 2015, we want as many people in as many countries as possible to be involved with MY World: citizens of all ages, genders and backgrounds, and particularly the world's poor and marginalized communities.
The Brussels based United Nations Regional Information Centre for Western Europe - UNRIC provides information on UN activities to the countries of the region. It also provides liaison with institutions of the European Union in the field of information. Its outreach activities extend to all segments of society and joint campaigns, projects and events are organized with partners including the EU, governments, the media, NGOs, schools and local authorities.
United Nations Regional Information Centre for Western Europe (UNRIC Brussels)
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