WANGO News 2023

More than half of the global population, 4.5 billion people, lives in urban areas. The transition to green, equitable, smart, and sustainable cities is urgently needed to deliver on the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and limit global warming to 1.5°C. The Global Forum on Human Settlements will hold its 18th annual session (GFHS 2023) on December 3 in Dubai, United Arab Emirates during COP28, the 2023 UN Climate Change Conference, to discuss “Green, Fair and Smart Urban Transformation: Synergistically Accelerating 1.5°C Goal and SDGs.” The event, which is being organized in collaboration with WANGO, is expected to produce the Dubai Declaration on that theme. (Read more...)

Civil society organizations dedicated to building peace in Israel, Palestine, and elsewhere in the Middle East are crucial to countering extremist ideology and providing emergency assistance to vulnerable communities. Unfortunately, many institutional donors have been reluctant to enter this field. "While some step up with humanitarian aid in response to the latest crisis, those critical funds aren’t enough," says Perry Cammack, peace-building program director for the Rockefeller Brothers Fund. Breaking the cycle of violence, repression, and extremism "will require efforts by Palestinian and Israeli nonprofit groups committed to building a just and durable peace...they need our support, especially now when the prospects for peace feel most distant," adds Cammack. (Read more...)

Heidi Kühn, founder of Roots of Peace, has been awarded the 2023 World Food Prize for her work to replace mines with vines in post-conflict regions over more than 25 years. The nonprofit, a WANGO Peace and Security Award recipient, was founded in 1997 to replace the remnants of war with farmland. The organization also trains farmers in modern agricultural practices, from planting and harvesting to marketing through international exports. The prize was formally presented to Kühn during the 2023 International Borlaug Dialogue, whose theme "Harnessing Change" focused on the role of innovation, adaptation, and diversification to improve the resilience of food systems, recover from shocks, and sustainably nourish all people.(Read more...)

The “Mapping Nonprofit Spending on Climate Change” report by the Indiana University Lilly Family School of Philanthropy estimates U.S.-based nonprofits spend between $7.8 billion and $9.2 billion annually addressing climate change. Of that spending, approximately 49 percent went to climate mitigation efforts and 14 percent went to adaptation, with 34 percent not clearly specified. The report, which was based on survey data from 130 organizations focused partly or entirely on the environment or climate change, also reveals that 53.7 percent of climate change spending by respondents was used for efforts in the U.S. and Canada, while 22 percent focused on climate issues in other parts of the world. (Read more...)

Transformational shifts rooted in science would urgently reverse the course and accelerate the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a recent UN report by an independent group of scientists says. In addition to offering practical solutions to turbocharge the SDGs, the “Global Sustainable Development Report 2023,” shows new evidence that there are more synergies than trade-offs between the SDGs, especially when investments are made in poverty reduction, health, education, gender equality, water and sanitation, clean energy and partnerships. It also notes that interventions in certain areas by different societal actors, such as sustainable food systems, human well-being, or energy decarbonization with universal access, can have systemic effects. (Read more...)

UN agencies and representatives from multiple countries gathered at the International Conference on Development and Migration on July 24 to address the increase in migration globally propelled by a diverse set of factors including climate change, conflicts, and economic crises. Among the recommendations it made, the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) advocated for an updated "whole-of-route" approach that includes ensuring access to territory for asylum seekers, expanding legal migration channels, and tackling the root causes of displacement. “All must do much more to address the climate emergency, promote good governance, invest in development, end conflict and persecution, and protect human rights,” said UNHCR head Filippo Grandi. (Read more...)

To mark World Refugee Day 2023, refugee-led nonprofit Community Empowerment for Creative Innovation (CECI) Uganda, a WANGO member, released its Impact Report 2020-2022, presenting the outcomes of its efforts to empower youth, women, and girls in Uganda through it peacebuilding, education, livelihood and environment programs. In two years, CECI Uganda improved the safety and wellbeing of 103,882 women, children, youth, persons with disabilities, and the elderly, with 64% being refugees. It also formed 15 local peace committees, selected degraded wetlands for restoration, and established community information centers. (Read more...)

Ukraine has shown over the past decade that the state and citizens can successfully cooperate to deliver very effective structural reforms. Since Russia's invasion in February 2022, Ukrainian civil society organizations (CSOs) have been deeply involved in reconstruction and relief work, "although many feel sidelined by national and regional authorities when it comes to planning and delivering the recovery," according to a new briefing paper by think tank Chatham House, "Giving Civil Society a Stake in Ukraine's Recovery," which draws from a survey of Ukrainian CSOs it conducted at the end of 2022. The paper examines CSOs' ambitions for engagement in recovery planning and delivery and sets out practical steps to foster effective and sustainable cooperation between the state and civil society. (Read more...)

The president of the Horticulture Association of Bhutan (HAoB), an NGO member of WANGO, has been honored with the prestigious Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam International Award for 2023. Tshering Wangchuk, the president, received the esteemed accolade which acknowledges individuals who have made remarkable contributions to the field of agriculture and farming, at a ceremony in India. Since its establishment in 2019, HAoB has been dedicated to achieving sustainable agriculture through partnerships with relevant agencies. To learn more about the association, please visit (Read more...)

M-Kids, an NGO member of WANGO, has launched IT SmartLab, an innovative educational project which equips children and teenagers in Mauritius with programming and coding skills, nurturing computational thinking, logical reasoning, creativity, and problem-solving. The first group to participate in this new initiative, carried out in collaboration with Educode Academy, comprised of 16 students between the ages of nine and 13, around 94% of whom don’t have access to a computer at home. To learn more about M-Kids, please click on the headline above. (Read more...)

This year’s International Day for Biological Diversity, celebrated on May 22 under the theme, “From Agreement to Action: Build Back Biodiversity,” follows the adoption of the landmark Kunming-Montreal Global Biodiversity Framework agreement by 196 nations in December 2022. Seen as crucial to halting and reversing nature loss, the framework sets global targets to safeguard and sustainably use biodiversity while protecting the rights of Indigenous peoples and local communities to be achieved by 2030. In order to reach the targets urgent action will be needed across ecosystem protection and restoration, food systems and finance. Experts hope that Biodiversity Day will help drive this action and build on the momentum to protect and restore nature. (Read more...)

At the 76th World Health Assembly, held from May 21 to 30 in Geneva, Switzerland, World Health Organization (WHO) director-general, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, appealed to countries to prepare to respond to the next pandemic, cautioning that the possibility of another pathogen emerging more lethal than COVID-19 remains. He called for urgent and constructive negotiations on the new global pandemic accord and International Health Regulations treaty, which governs preparedness and response to health emergencies. This is “a generational commitment that we will not go back to the old cycle of panic and neglect that left our world vulnerable, but move forward with a shared commitment to meet shared threats with a shared response," Ghebreysus said. (Read more...)

The Children Nutrition's Foundation, Gyermeketkeztetesi Alapitvany (GYEA), an NGO member of WANGO, welcomes NGOs globally to register for its community fundraising program at The program provides participating NGOs the opportunity to encourage their supporters to fundraise for them by purchasing an online recording of a charity classical music concert. The deadline to register is April 10. For more information, please click on the headline above. (Read more...)

The 5th UN Conference on the Least Developed Countries (LDC5) was held under the theme “From Potential to Prosperity” from March 5 to 9 in Doha, Qatar to drive transformational change to positively affect the 1.2 billion people who live in the LDCs. Over 9,000 participants attended the event, including 47 heads of state, WANGO and other civil society organizations, and the private sector. The conference resulted in the Doha Political Declaration, which outlines concrete measures to implement the Doha Programme of Action (DPoA), a ten-year plan adopted in 2022, which seeks to help LDCs get back on track to achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). To read the draft, visit: (Read more...)

According to The Giving Block’s 2023 annual report, 2022 saw the greatest increase in new nonprofits fundraising with crypto and donors from across the web3 ecosystem, from individuals to blockchain companies and NFT creators, supporting a wide range of causes. The report also highlights how crypto is helping nonprofits modernize their fundraising methods and young donors grow their impact. Crypto donations are forecasted to exceed $10 billion in 2032. (Read more...)

International Women's Day 2023, observed on March 8 under the theme, "DigitALL: Innovation and Technology for Gender Equality," recognizes and celebrates the women and girls who are championing the advancement of transformative technology and digital education. It will explore the impact of the digital gender gap on widening economic and social inequalities and will also spotlight the importance of protecting the rights of women and girls in digital spaces and addressing online and ICT-facilitated gender-based violence. To mark the day, the UN will hold an event from 10 to 11:30 a.m. ET featuring a high-level panel discussion and musical performances. To watch it live, visit: (Read more...)

The first India Giving Day, held on March 2, raised more than $13 million from over 990 donors in the Indian American community to support 25 U.S.-based nonprofits that do charitable work in India, including in the areas of education, health and poverty alleviation. Among these organizations were Akanksha Education Fund, the American Indian Foundation, Teach for India, Pratham USA and Vibha. Encouraged by the overwhelming response, the India Philanthropy Alliance plans to organize India Giving Day every year. (Read more...)

Following the magnitude 7.8 and 7.5 earthquakes that rocked southern Turkey and northern Syria on February 6, nonprofits, foundations and national governments globally have promised financial support as humanitarian aid and assistance is delivered to the region. NGOs like Mercy Corps and World Vision are providing on-the-ground disaster relief, while the Red Cross Society of China and Singapore Red Cross have directed aid to the Turkish Red Crescent and Syrian Red Crescent. In addition, South Korea, Australia and New Zealand have pledged millions of dollars. The disaster relief being provided includes access to clean water and sanitation, heating fuel, hot meals, medical supplies and first aid kits, and clothes.(Read more...)

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