Identify a problem, test strategies and solutions and develop a project to tackle the issue. This is how the projects presented for the Global Junior Challenge are born. Many different stories narrate the commitment to fight inequality and poverty, providing exemplary solutions that can become valuable for the entire international community. There is an extraordinary convergence between the Millennium Objectives – addressing low-income, hunger, gender discrimination, environmental pollution, lack of education, health assistance and water – and the individual priorities identified by young men and women around the world. Human development requires teamwork.
The 7th edition of the Global Junior Challenge coincides with two great events: 2015 European Year for Development, the deadline for the United Nations’ Millennium Development Goals (MDG) and the new Agenda 2030 for sustainable development that doubles the objectives.
Inform, raise awareness and involve European citizens on the issues of cooperation and global development. These are the objectives of the European Year for Development proclaimed for 2015 by the European Council and Parliament with the motto “our world, our dignity, our future.”
Moreover, since its inception, the Global Junior Challenge has placed particular attention on self-development projects, promoted by low-income countries for the poorest categories.
This year, there are 21 projects by countries with a low index of human development. They are nearly all from Africa; four are from Asia and they all are from Pakistan.
One of the presented projects is entitled “TELECOMMUNICATIONS BASED RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT.” It has been developed in Niger, one of the countries with lowest global pro capita income (ca. 400 dollars). The project was developed by a private institute, the Centre for Professional Training in Ibadan, Niger’s second city in terms of population and capital of the State of Oyo. The project is in the ICT for Environmental Sustainability Category.
Notwithstanding the abundance of mineral resources, the country is one of the poorest in the world. Corruption is rife and mine owners withhold most of the profits. Thus, international aid is key (also see: Cooperazione italiana allo sviluppo in Niger). The main activity in the country is agriculture, but it is continuously threatened by drought and desertification.