Peace is fundamental to sustainability. Yet conflict, hatred, violence touch our daily lives in one form or the other. The world now has more refugees than ever before. Divisiveness and suspicion seem to be driving us apart irrevocably. And all the while, the grim spectre of a nuclear holocaust hangs over our heads threatening to wipe out humanity with the push of a button.SDG #16 specifically focuses on “Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions”. Yet peace runs like a thread through all 17 of the Goals. Every year on the International Day of Peace, the United Nations calls on the people of the world to remember their common humanity and join together to build a future free of strife. Peace building cannot be a one day phenomena. It is ironical that the same nations which solemnly make promises on International Peace Day, spend the rest of the year producing ICBMs and superbombs.
As young people, we do not want our future to be under constant threat of annihilation due to a nuclear meltdown. If we are to reach high then we must start by building upwards from a ground level, building consensus amongst all stakeholders and influence our leaders to spend public money on education, law & order, infrastructure, healthcare and employment generation and not on armaments and self-destructing industries. We must support and promote all strands of engagement simultaneously – be it non-proliferation, risk-reduction, incremental measures and stronger prohibition measures.
Green Hope works on peacebuilding by creating awareness through disarmament education. We engage youth in creating grassroot level campaigns in peace building, lobbying policy makers and parliamentarians to implement just and transparent laws that prevent governments from patronizing the powerful weapon manufacturing lobby and instead use the resources for health care, education and job creation.