Global Citizen Festival to invest $3.37 bn in India

On Saturday November 19, 2016, the Global Citizen Festival India took place for the first time at the MMRDA Grounds, Bandra-Kurla Complex, Mumbai. World and business leaders, non-profit organisations, socially conscious artists, and tens of thousands of Global Citizens united to kick-start India’s progress toward achieving the Sustainable Development Goals with a special focus on gender equality, education and water & sanitation.

In just two months since the launch of the Global Citizen India movement, more than 5 lakh young Global Citizens in India took more than 20 lakh actions calling on political, faith and business leaders, along with celebrities, to be more accountable in their efforts to improve education, gender equality and water, sanitation and hygiene in India.

Hugh Evans, CEO, Global Citizen, said, “Global Citizen Festival India showed the power of youth taking action together. More than 500,000 young Global Citizens took more than 2 million actions. And tonight, we saw the results - dozens of commitments that will affect the lives of 500m people. Tonight marks a moment of great celebration, but it is only the beginning of the journey. The growing movement of more than 8 million Global Citizens around the world will keep campaigning to make sure leaders deliver on these promises, and commit to do even more.”

Gowri Ishwaran, CEO, The Global Education and Leadership Foundation, added here, “Today’s Global Citizen Festival India brought together 70,000 young people who made their voices heard by leaders from private industry, government, non-governmental, community and religious organisations on the issues that matter: Sanitation, Education and Gender Equality. Their incredible 20 lakh actions showed leaders that young people are serious in their commitment to hold them to account to use their resources for social good. The commitments made in response show the world that citizen-led change is possible. The commitments made here today are set to impact 50 crore people in India and around the world - and this is just the start.”

In response, leaders at the Global Citizen Festival India made 25 announcements and commitments which are set to affect 500 million people (50 crore) people, with a collective value of $3.37 billion (Rs 22,490 crore).

Top campaign victories & commitments

Gender Equality: Global Citizens took 518,000 actions in support of investing in girls and women to achieve gender equality. These efforts secured four commitments that are set to affect the lives of more than for 2 million women, including the International Finance Corporation Banking on Women Group committing $2 billion towards banking on women and promoting women entrepreneurship by end 2019. This includes a $100 million investment in India.

Quality Education: Global Citizens took 265,000 actions, and the Global Citizen team advocated privately to businesses to use their expertise and CSR spend, in support of improving the quality of education for children. In response, six commitments were secured, including HP committing to provide 48 mobile classrooms, investing $3.6 million to result in 15 million people in rural areas of India getting access to quality education and technology over six years.

Water, Sanitation & Hygiene: Global Citizens took 651,000 actions calling on government, businesses, faith groups and NGOs to outline how they would deliver on India’s commitment to clean water and sanitation for all, securing 11 commitments and announcements that are set to affect the lives of 486 million people.

Global Citizens will continue to campaign to make sure that leaders deliver on these promises, and that they commit to do even more on the seven ongoing calls to action that were launched from the stage of the event.

The Global Citizen India movement is a 15-year commitment to catalyse India’s journey to eradicate extreme poverty in line with the SDGs. Over the years to come, it will continue its work to influence world leaders and decision makers to enact policy changes and commit significant resources to help solve the world’s biggest challenges through a distinctive mix of youth-led events, grassroots activism, media campaigning and online activation.

The Global Citizen Festival India was presented by Colors Viacom18 and Venky’s, and was powered by UPL and NECC. The festival, a collaboration between The Global Education and Leadership Foundation and Global Citizen, was hosted in Mumbai by the Government of Maharashtra and was event-produced by Wizcraft International Entertainment. Other partners included: the United Nations; the Times of India Group; Google; Hindustan Unilever; Ola; Spykar; Make My Trip; Taj Group of Hotels; BookMyShow; Rishtey Cineplex; Voot; and Radio Mirchi.


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