Learning workshops on localizing the Sustainable Development Goals (the SDGs) took place within three days from 18 to 20 May 2022 in the city of Bishkek. These seminars were organized by staffers of UCLG-Eurasia based on the modules developed by the UCLG World Organization jointly with UN-Habitat.
The workshop for staffers of the Bishkek Municipality
The first two-day workshop was held on 18-19 May and gathered staffers of the Bishkek Municipality from different structural divisions, including representatives of the economics and investment department, social development directorate, urban economy department, etc. The participants of the seminar learned about the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the SDGs, and main phases of sustainable planning, monitoring of the SDGs’ implementation and accountability.
During the seminar, surveys were conducted. They showed that SDG 8 “Decent work and economic growth”, as well as SDG 3 “Good health and well-being”, SDG 4 “Quality education” and SDG 1 “No poverty” were considered by the staffers to be of the highest priority for Bishkek.
It is gratifying to note that 85% of respondents highlighted that they are dealing with the SDGs in their daily activities. It is interesting that the participants of the survey consider SDG 11 “Sustainable cities and communities”, SDG 4 “Quality education” and SDG 2 “Zero hunger” as the most achieved goals in Bishkek.
Various interactive exercises and discussions were organized during the workshop. The participants pointed out that the most vulnerable groups in Bishkek include low-income people, single mothers, and families with many children, persons with disabilities, and pensioners with the lowest pension living alone.
Discussing the preparation of the Voluntary Local Review of the SDGs, staffers of the municipality emphasized the need to engage all groups of citizens in the process of deliberation and planning, as well as the importance of cooperation with public organizations and business community to inform citizens and ensure a dialogue.
Access of low-income people to digital services, creation of the barrier-free environment everywhere, absence of stable wages, and unemployment, lack of local finance were mentioned as the main challenges to reach the SDGs.
The participants of the workshop consider that all fundamental principles of the sustainable development are being used in specific projects of the city. For instance, the principle “to leave no one behind” was taken into account in elaborating the Programme of Social and Economic Development for 2023-2026. Representatives of civil society, including persons with disabilities were involved in discussing this Programme.
The main topic for discussion was the preparation of reviews of the SDGs, namely the participation of the Municipality of Bishkek in elaborating the National Review of the SDGs of the Kyrgyz Republic and the development of the Voluntary Local Review of the SDGs of Bishkek. Representatives of the International Relations Department of the Municipality told that the work in this direction had already been started and statistical information had been collected. The next step will be the analysis of data and preparation of the review that can further be presented at the High-level Political Forum in New York.
The workshop concluded with awarding certificates of participation in the seminar on the SDGs.
As part of the visit, the meeting of the UCLG Eurasia’s delegation with Vice-Chairman of the Bishkek City Council Mr.Toktosun Sultanov was held. The parties discussed the participation of representatives of Bishkek in different projects and activities of UCLG.
The next learning workshop on localizing the SDGs was held on 20 May for members of the Union of Local Self-Governments of the Kyrgyz Republic.