Early in the year 2016, the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable- adopted by world leaders in September 2015 at a historic United Nations Summit- officially came into force.
Since the emergence of this global goals, young people have significantly engaged with local, national and global decision making processes. There is strong participation in socio-economic, political or environmental issues, which has developed into social change.
Nearly two-thirds (66%) of young people have access to Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, WhatsApp, etc. In today’s world, people aged 15-35 use social media platforms to sign petitions, share opinions regarding national or world systems, e-debate and also promote advocacy towards developmental goals.
Social media has played an impactful role in leadership and youth engagements because it is a medium where youths use to communicate with charities, Non-Governmental bodies, campaign groups and even people living with challenges. People are taking up responsibility and leadership roles towards community-driven projects and needs. These solved needs are in turn a means of awareness and mobilization for the partnership of goals. Inequality is also reduced with the help of social platforms as individuals are given the opportunity to share their thoughts and ideas amongst other people. Social media has created a platform and increased chances of advocating for social transformation irrespective of one’s location or continent. Together, people speak in one voice and accomplish goals because there is a mutual ideology and need that overcome tribe, gender, status, race.
I remember vividly well of a 21-year-old man who uses art paintings in reaching out to children with Autism. He will upload the drawings on Twitter and Instagram, alongside tagging and creating keywords that relate to his audience. In two months, his impact was felt and he was reached tor collaboration by four people from different countries. Social media makes social change be heard.