“The adaptation of Sustainable Development Goals [SDGs] in regions across Indonesia has evidently accelerated, an an exemplary practice that should be adopted by other countries,” said Ivanovich Agusta, head of the Development and Information Agency of the Village, Development of Disadvantaged Regions and Transmigration Ministry, during the “Transformation from the Ground up: Acting at Local Level” session.
This cross-country session was part of the 2023 High-Level Political Forum on Sustainable Development, and was held at the United Nations headquarters in New York, the United States, on July 11. Joined by delegations from 196 countries, Indonesia showcased exhibitions to the world highlighting its national-to-village-level SDG achievements and presented a seminar titled “Driving Change at the Local Level: Innovative Approaches to Localize SDGs.”
In the session, Indonesia shared its experiences regarding localizing SDGs at all levels, from national to regional and even village levels. “At the village level, the country has several policy directions, such as the Village SDGs initiative,” explained Ivanovich. He further elaborated how Village, Development of Disadvantaged Regions and Transmigration Minister A Halim Iskandar created the Village SDGs to empower rural communities. They actively contribute to supporting the Village SDGs through facilities, knowledge and other resources.” Village SDGs also ensure that the voices of rural populations are heard, emphasizing inclusivity and the importance of strengthening the sense of ownership alongside solidarity among village residents. Local governments play a crucial role in engaging stakeholders to support the Village SDGs policy direction.
“During the pandemic, Indonesia also implemented two main policies, namely the Direct Cash Assistance for Village Funds and Cash-for-Work in Villages,” Ivanovich continued.
The Direct Cash Assistance for Village Funds aims to provide financial assistance to poor families in villages. This initiative was enacted to help them cope with the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. While the Cash-for-Work program aims to empower rural communities through productive activities in infrastructure and the economy. Through these programs, villages can become the backbone of Indonesia’s economic recovery. At the regional level, two major cities, Jakarta and Surabaya, have prepared Voluntary Local Reviews (VLRs). These localized SDG documents highlight the policies and programs that can reduce poverty, empower communities and promote inclusive and sustainable growth. These local government SDG reports are expected to inspire other cities in Indonesia to accelerate SDG progress and formulate their own reports. Currently, the Indonesian government is ramping up the preparation of reports by six other cities and four provinces. “We encourage these VLRs to also highlight programs and progress on SDGs at the village level,” added Ivanovich. “We hope that the transformative actions, innovative solutions and progress achieved by rural communities are not only acknowledged but also shared and replicated across all UN member countries” He closes.
Source: Jarkata Times