The power of local transformation at the SDG Global Festival of Action

14 Apr 2021

The SDG Global Festival of Action, organized by the UN SDG Action Campaign, took place  the 25th and 26th of March 2021, with the aim to promote new ways to implement the SDGs and to mobilize and connect people and organizations.UCLG participated in different sessions of the SDG Global Festival of Action.

UCLG mayors Carolina Cosse, Mayor of Montevideo and UCLG Incoming Vice-President for Latin America, Jose Manuel Ribeiro, Mayor of Valongo and Thembisile Nkadimeng, Mayor of Polokwane, President of the South African Local Government Association (SALGA) and UCLG Co-President held a dialogue session with the UNDP Administrator on the commitment of the constituency towards the recovery and much more. See report and recording of the Deep Dive Discussion: Reimagining our Common Future – The Turning Point Starts Locally. Furthermore, Emilia Saiz, UCLG Secretary General joined the “Big Picture Plenary: Turning it Around – Think Big, Think Systems”, emphasizing the key relevance of local governments in public service provision and towards the definition of a new social contract.

UCLG once again joined the SDG Global Festival to remind the local level is a unique enabler of transformation and thus localization of the SDGs remains a core aspect.

The Local4Action HUBs initiative by UCLG was present at the Festival with the session Local4Action HUBs: The power of local transformation through the SDGs held on March 25th. In this framework, the session aimed to celebrate local actions and its transformative power to  trigger innovation and have a multiplier effect that impacts the 2030 Agenda implementation.

The session promoted the idea of the need for the global agendas to be linked to local realities and to be shaped by the real experiences on the ground, by the neighbors, by the communities, the youth and partners. This idea emphasizes the reason and nature behind the Local4Action HUBs initiative by UCLG.

The session invited current initiatives to showcase the collaboration with partners in bolstering their HUBs  towards global sustainability and how they are building ecosystems to accelerate the localization of the 2030 Agenda.

The workshop featured the experiences of the Local4Action HUB Xi’an, Local4Action HUB Buenos Aires, Local4Action HUB Cuenca, Local4Action HUB FAMSI and Local4Action HUB AICCRE and further showcased how the initiatives are engaging with academia, civil society, and international organizations to inspire local actions to make Agenda 2030 a reality for all.

In this format, the Local4Action HUBs initiatives shared their transformation stories around topics such as youth, intergenerational transformation, civil society and public servant’s engagement, open governance for climate action, the defense of public services, and partnerships for the localization of the global agendas. These exchanges created an excellent opportunity to bring and evidence key local stakeholders and to signify the collective process of co-creation and the importance of local knowledge and shared ownership needed to move forward to the transformations and commitments requested by the 2030 Agenda.

This dialogue presented a great opportunity to raise awareness and to promote interest in the Local4Action HUBs initiative, as a unique space for networking and learning for local innovation and promoted the generation of new ideas, partnerships, inputs for the political processes about 2030 Agenda and invite others to join this global dynamic. Finally, the session had very positive feedback resulting in the recognition of Cities leading SDG action as part of the Festival’s main takeaways.

Session can be seen in the following link.

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