July 5, 2022
Opportunity International is a global microfinance charity that has been working for over 50 years to reduce global poverty. We fully support the SDGs and are committed to progress in as many of them as are within the scope of our work.
The United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were published in 2015. It’s quite an inspiring list articulating a vision for a better future for all people around the globe. Getting there will require the combined and committed efforts of everyone, including Governments, NGOs, Corporations, and Individuals. Opportunity International is a global microfinance charity that has been working for over 50 years to reduce global poverty. We fully support the SDGs and are committed to progress in as many of them as are within the scope of our work.
The following is the list of the 17 goals (those within our scope are highlighted in bold):
#1. No Poverty
#2. Zero Hunger
#3. Good Health and Well-Being
#4. Quality Education
#5. Gender Equality
#6. Clean Water and Sanitation
#7 Affordable and Clean Energy
#8. Decent Work and Economic Growth
#9. Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure
#10. Reduced Inequalities
#11. Sustainable Cities and Communities
#12. Responsible Consumption and Production
#13. Climate Action
#14. Life Below Water
#15. Life on Land
#16. Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions
#17. Partnerships for the Goals
Since the 1970s Opportunity International has been a pioneer in the field of microfinance, helping to create innovative financial tools such as microleasing, microloans, microsavings and microinsurance. Today we are active in over 30 countries, working in partnership with local microfinance institutions and non-governmental organizations with whom we share a core value of fighting poverty through financial inclusion for marginalized populations.
Often illiterate, innumerate and without assets or a regular income, clients cannot access the formal banking sector. Through financial inclusion, training and support, clients are provided with the skills and resources needed to acquire a sustainable livelihood and provide for their family.
At Opportunity International we put the interests of clients first, are a leader in developing client protection policies and approaches and ensure our local Partners share these values. Although we are committed to sustainability, client success is always our highest value, not profit.
Perhaps this shouldn’t be surprising – though we see change in one client and family at a time, when multiplied by millions the impact moves from the micro to the macro and will be as diverse as the initiative and interest of each client.
But I find it fascinating how something as simple as a small loan with training can unleash opportunity across a wide spectrum of society, and in the process make progress in at least 12 of the 17 SDGs, listed above. Perhaps this shouldn’t be surprising – though we see change in one client and family at a time, when multiplied by millions the impact moves from the micro to the macro and will be as diverse as the initiative and interest of each client
Over the next series of blog posts, I will discuss some of the ways in which Opportunity International Canada works towards achieving progress in at least 12 of the UN SDGs. Given our strong value and commitment to finding sustainable solutions to poverty, we like to think we help put the S in the SDGs.
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