In the period 3-12 July 2018, a delegation from Green Hope Foundation visited Suriname. Green Hope is an international youth NGO that works for sustainable development with children and youth. The delegation composed 5 young people in the age of 13-18 years and a chaperone and they came from Dubai, Canada and Oman.
The overall goal of the visit was to increase the involvement of Surinamese youth in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) that are endorsed by the United Nations as the global development agenda until 2030. Suriname was chosen by Green Hope for the collaboration because of our unique status as the most forested country in the world (93% of our land surface is covered by forest) and our rich biodiversity. Green Hope wants to make the global community as well as the Surinamese population more aware of the importance of these forests for the whole world, and through that increase the opportunities for Suriname to obtain international support for forest conservation and sustainable forest management.
REDD+ is in Suriname seen as a tool to achieve national sustainable development. To work with the Sustainable Development Goals is therefore of significant importance also for the REDD+ programme. The most direct link between REDD+ and the Sustainable Development Goals are SDG #13 – Climate Action, SDG #15 – Life on Land and SDG #17 – Partnerships to achieve the goals. In addition, all the 17 Sustainable Development Goals are indirectly linked to the vision of REDD+ in Suriname. The activities that took place during the visit of Green Hope were therefore fully supported by the REDD+ programme, while the international guests financed their own tickets to get here and the Cabinet of the President’s Coordination Environment supported the mission in natura.
The activities that were carried out together with Green Hope are among others a Youth Awareness Conference for a Sustainable Suriname on 4 July in the CCS, Creative Art and Music Workshops for a Sustainable Suriname for students of different schools on 5 and 6 July in KKF, and environmental activities with school children in Sunny Point and in the orphanage Sanatan Dharm. Together with local actors, Green Hope planted mangroves and other trees and cleaned up the beach at Braamspunt. The delegation learnt a lot about local biodiversity and nature protection from organizations such as the Green Heritage Fund Suriname.
On top of this, Green Hope signed a collaboration agreement with the National Youth Parliament of Suriname, in which it is stated that the Youth Parliament shall establish a Green Hope Suriname chapter that will fall under Green Hope International. This organization will give the chance to young people in Suriname to stay actively involved in the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals. Green Hope Suriname will carry out activities in close collaboration with the REDD+ programme and other national initiatives.