By Stáňa Tomková – Campaign coordinator Czechia Against Poverty
The public awareness about the Sustainable Development Goals is generally weak in the Czech Republic and is not largely supported by politicians or public leaders. Therefore, Czechia Against Poverty, a member of SDG Watch Europe & GCAP, decided to organise a SDGs event in the capital to provide information and materials about the SDGs and Agenda 2030 to the people of Prague.
This event gave the wider public an opportunity to increase their knowledge of the Agenda 2030 and particular SDGs as well as to learn more about the progress on Agenda 2030 in the Czech Republic. Volunteers from Czechia Against Poverty offered fair-trade coffee and tea for free to the public and distributed leaflets and materials on sustainable development and other activities. The goal was also to encourage people to live more sustainable by changing consumption patterns, getting familiar with the fair-trade process and by buying local food and products.
An exhibition called “Hungry Planet: What the World Eats” with 12 large-format photographs by Peter Menzel was also part of the event, which compares food consumption and eating habits in different countries all around the world. Visitors were given an overview of the different living conditions in other parts of the planet and the chance to compare the large inequalities. For example, the exhibition highlights extremes such as the consumption of a very poor Sudanese family in a Chad refugee camp with the large food consumption of the middle-class American family. Families were photographed in their natural environments in their homes, with all the food they usually consume in a week. The exhibition also included a photo of a Czech family in addition to Peter Menzel’s other posters so that the visitors could compare the Czech context too.
The event took place at the centre of Prague and was supported by Ivan Bartoš, the Czech Pirate Party Leader, a popular young politician who recently entered the Czech Parliament. The Czech Pirate Party is currently the third largest party in the country and its programme is in line with SDGs Agenda and is generally promoting greater transparency in the public administration and for reducing inequalities. They are also conducting important steps to raise the issue of the Law on Social Housing which was rejected by the previous government. The Czech Republic remains one of the very few countries in the world which does not have any sort of social or affordable housing program.
Czechia Against Poverty is a campaign of Czech humanitarian and development NGOs founded in 2005 in Czech capital Prague. Czechia Against Poverty is a member of GCAP.