Liverpool and the Sustainable Development Goals event

Pablo Guido, Director of Liverpool World Centre, on our recent joint event around Liverpool and the SDG’s.

Make It Your Business: supply chains and sustainable livelihoods

The UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) sit firmly in the remit of Liverpool World Centre (LWC), and have captured the imagination of nonprofits and businesses alike. So we were really pleased to have the opportunity to partner with Think Global on an event themed around the SDGs, and were thrilled by the enthusiasm of people from different sectors to engage with the event. ‘Make It Your Business: supply chains and sustainable livelihoods’, held in Liverpool on 13 December, drew a full house of 35 people from local charities, businesses and social enterprises, university departments and schools with links to business related courses and sustainability responsibilities.

The event began with an introduction from LWC’s Andrea Bullivant about the SDGs – how they are interconnected, and why they are relevant for all of us. Quentin Lake then explained some of the issues arising from his work at 50eight, a Liverpool-based organisation that partners with companies, charities and others ​to address the challenges of modern slavery and improve working conditions in global supply chains.

Think Global Programme Manager, Catherine Richardson introduced two Think Global projects – SUSY (promoting the social and solidarity economy) and Supply Cha!nge (‘Make supermarkets fair’), encouraging participants to reflect on how the themes of these projects might be relevant for Liverpool and the SDGs, and outlining ways to get involved.

The event concluded with a session led by myself, during which participants, aided by hands-on activities, got into really engaged discussions about how the SDGs can be a useful framework to help businesses and charities/ community groups work together. We also discussed which of the SDGs are most important to Liverpool going forward (eradicating poverty? Quality education? Decent work and economic growth?).

By 4.30pm the room was still buzzing with a room full of people – and the event had finished at 4pm!  The event had proved to be just the catalyst for conversation and connection that we had hoped for. We had engaged businesses, charities, students and universities to talk about what the SDGs meant for them. They had heard from Think Global about fantastic and inspiring examples of the social and solidarity economy, and from 50Eight about tackling slavery in supply chains. But most importantly they had made connections with others, and captured the spirit of the SDGs to challenge inequality in Merseyside and be part of a global movement to create a more just and sustainable future for everyone. The event showed how there is an appetite for building up partnership at local and national level to create innovative ideas and approaches to working with the SDGs.

Blog by Pablo Guido, Director of Liverpool World Centre.

We are working with local partner DEED in Dorset to plan a similar joint event in January. Please get in touch if you’d like to get involved or discuss planning an event with us in your area.

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