Champions of the Global Goals: Amanda Robinson
I hosted a summer camp for teenage boys in Mombasa, Kenya in 2013. It was everything you would imagine about a weeklong summer camp at the beach: loud, smelly, and incredibly rewarding. The boys who attended are known as street boys around the country because they are a pack of displaced, mostly orphaned boys who have formed a pseudo family. This pack mentality helps them battle the difficulties of living in the streets and trying to survive day to day.
Spending a week getting to know teenagers who have only known struggle was incredibly humbling as I listened to their dreams for their future. Their daily struggles for shelter and food and their sadness about not being able to complete their primary education were minor concerns in relation to the constant threat of violence they faced.
I chose “Goal 16 – Peace, Justice & Strong Institutions” because I understand that eradicating violence against the world’s poorest billions is the first step in moving our world toward realizing all of our development objectives. Supporting an infrastructure that will protect marginalized populations against the threat of common criminal acts will be a catalyst of change. By strengthening law enforcement institutions, businesses can operate without fear of intimidation, families would not lose their homes without just cause, and young women and girls will not have to live in fear of traveling to work or school alone.
My week with the street boys of Mombasa was a glimpse of what a life without violence could be for them. My hope for the future is that one day, each of them will escape the poverty they know and be able to achieve some of the goals they have for their lives because of the increase in support from law enforcement.
Learn more about Goal 16 and what you can do to get involved at the IMPACT 2030 website.