Mixed reactions to the SDGs from Africa

Alliance magazine

Alliance asked a number of African organisations how the SDGs inform their work and how useful they found them as a means of determining their own priorities. Here are the responses, in their own words

Distant from realities on the ground

‘The SDGs affect our work because they provide a global framework on development which our countries have aligned with their development and humanitarian work. For Tilitonse Foundation to operate in Malawi, our interventions should be aligned to the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) that are derived from the SDGs. We have to make sure that our activities are within the MDGs, and even the support we get from development partners in Malawi is dictated by the MDGs.

We find SDGs reflect the Global North concepts and definitions of development. They basically frame development in their thinking and ways of working, which advance their interests and agendas. They are limited because much as the broader aspirations could be relevant (in terms of bringing positive change), the nitty grittiest are far from the realities in Malawi. For example, how do we define development, how do we define change, how do we achieve the change etc? The definitions, approaches and results under the SDGs do not reflect the realities and felt needs of the people.’

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