Empowering Communities for Sustainable Futures

Empowering New Zealanders to engage in lifelong learning to contribute to a more peaceful and sustainable future for all.

Education at UNESCO’s heart

Since its establishment, UNESCO has placed education at the heart of its mission to build peace. It recognises quality education as a human right and emphasises the importance of lifelong learning.

UNESCO’s work in this area is guided by the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development which is made up of 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and 169 targets to achieve sustainable development globally.

UNESCO has the UN mandate to lead on SDG4, which aims to “ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all’.

It focuses on the moral purposes of education, asking us all to think about why we are learning. The target also promotes the importance of lifelong learning. We have focused on Target 4.7 over the past three years through our Global Citizenship Education work.

What is Global Citizenship Education?

GCED aims to empower learners of all ages to assume active roles to face and resolve global challenges and to become proactive contributors to a more peaceful, tolerant, inclusive and secure world.

Over the past three years, we have focused on identifying, recognising and leading GCED initiatives in Aotearoa New Zealand and in doing so, have connected local work, communities and young people with the SDGs.

We supported the Civil Society report to the UN ‘The People’s Report on the 2030 Agenda and Sustainable Development Goals’, led by Hui E.

The four short videos below, recorded at the GCED Ideas Exchange in October 2020, give a flavour of how people are putting ideas into practice. The four speakers traversed subjects such as: the arts in dealing with trauma, spirituality, prison education, mental health and innovation – highlighting that GCED takes many forms in different locations while reaching people of all ages.

Working to empower our communities for sustainable futures.

Today we continue to focus on empowering communities to be more sustainable through lifelong learning. Our work is guided by the concepts outlined in five discussion papers that we commissioned in 2019.

Our work recognises the unique New Zealand context, grounded in Te Tiriti o Waitangi principles and informed by Māori tikanga and values.

English sdg 17goals poster all languages with un emblem 1


Sustainable Development Goals

In September 2015, the United Nations signed up to 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and 169 targets which set out a universal agenda to achieve sustainable development globally, known as Agenda 2030. They bring together the three dimensions of sustainable development: economic, social and environmental.

Next up:

Freedom of Responsible Expression
Scroll to top