Danilo Türk, former President of Slovenia led a mission to Sri Lanka on 8-12 July, to explore potential ways in which World Leadership Alliance-Club de Madrid (WLA-CdM) can contribute to advance sustainable development in the country by promoting policies aligned with the UN Sustainable Development Goals.
The WLA-CdM Member also presented our Education for Shared Societies Agenda to a series of civil society representatives. This agenda complies a set of policy recommendations that resulted from our 2018 Policy Dialogue. These recommendations aim at promoting understanding between different groups, easing interethnic tensions and fostering the development of a diverse society through education.
Below we invite you to join President Danilo Türk in this mission to grasp Sri Lanka’s different approaches to development. As a result of this mission, WLA-CdM will determine how WLA-CdM can contribute to implementing Agenda 2030 in Sri Lanka.
Club de Madrid’s future role in Sri Lanka
Throughout the mission to Sri Lanka, the WLA-CdM delegation perceived a breach between what politicians are saying and what is happening on the ground. Paired with a lack of evidence-based policymaking, this breach is fanning the flames of disillusionment with politics.
A greater understanding of sustainable development and the change needed to implement Agenda 2030 will not only come from governments. The grassroots must be involved.
A vibrant civil society is critical to motivating political leaders. WLA-CdM can play an important role in bridging the gap between civil society and politicians. Our Members have often acted as intermediaries between what civil society demands and political agendas decided by top-level officials or elected representatives.
Our Shared Societies approach, which we have been developing for more than 10 years now and aims at building a world safe for difference, can also contribute to ‘leaving no one behind’ in Sri Lanka.
“I see how the ‘Shared Societies’ concept would help us in the future. Our village, communities and poorer socio-economic groups tend to rely on each other and our social networks are very strong. Sharing is part of the ethos of Buddhism”, said one participant at a Roundtable.
WLA-CdM is deciding on the next steps to define its involvement in fostering the implementation of Agenda 2030 in Sri Lanka through its Shared Societies Project.