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Blogs, Opinion Pieces Recognize 1,000 Day Milestone Until End Of MDGs

April 5 marked 1,000 days until the end of the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), agreed to by the U.N. in 2000 as the world’s first development agenda. International discussions are underway to determine the post-2015 development agenda. Several blog posts and opinion pieces recently addressed the milestone.

  • Steve Feldstein, USAID’s “IMPACTblog”: “The United States is committed to the MDGs and, broadly, to improving wellbeing, promoting prosperity, and tackling some of the world’s gravest challenges, like poverty, hunger, morbidity, and inequality,” Feldstein, director of policy for USAID’s Bureau of Policy, Planning and Learning, writes, outlining some of the progress that has been made over the past 13 years. However, “we have more work to do,” he states and describes some of USAID’s initiatives. “While we work to accelerate progress in these final 1,000 days, we also hope these interlinked and collaborative efforts will produce a new development agenda, for beyond 2015, that builds on the impressive and historic successes of the MDGs,” he concludes (4/5).
  • Katherine Marshall, Huffington Post “Religion”: “The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are grounded in three vital realizations,” Marshall, a senior fellow at the Berkley Center for Religion, Peace, and World Affairs at Georgetown University, writes. “The first is that, for the very first time in human history, we have the tools, the knowledge, and the resources to end poverty,” she states, adding that the second is “a need for accountability for results,” and the third, “achieving vast and demanding goals requires leadership, coordination and discipline.” She continues, “Faith communities are a vital part of this ambitious global compact to act with conscience and science, though they have rarely been as visible and vital partners as they should be. … And the call to action, to put hands to work, to stick to promises, all are essential parts of what faith communities stand for at their finest” (4/5).
  • John Podesta, Foreign Policy: “While the next thousand days are an important last push to achieve the MDGs, we need to also focus on what will happen in 2015 and beyond,” Podesta, chair of the Center for American Progress and a member of the U.N. High-Level Panel of Eminent Persons on the Post-2015 Development Agenda, writes. He discusses successes of the MDGs, as well as U.S. efforts to reach the goals. “For the next thousand days, we will continue to pursue the achievement of the MDGs — improving maternal health and reducing hunger, striving for gender parity in education, and reducing the incidence of malaria and HIV,” he writes, concluding, “And beyond that there will be a new agenda that builds on what we have learned from the MDGs, an agenda tailored to the new social, environmental and economic challenges facing our world, and one that moves us ever closer to eradicating extreme poverty in our time and for all time” (4/5).
  • Jasmine Whitbread, Huffington Post “Impact”: Whitbread, chief executive of Save The Children International, focuses on the goal of reducing under-five child mortality and “saving the lives of 4.4 million children in these last 1,000 days,” writing, “I’m supporting the U.N. Foundation’s Momentum 1,000 initiative, which aims to ignite that sense of urgency in the final days of the MDGs.” She continues, “[W]e shouldn’t forget that the strongest platform for any post-2015 goals will be achieving the task we already have in hand. Our focus needs to remain on what we are doing now to make the world a better place for children, in the spirit that the world signed up to the MDG goals” (4/5).