SDGs in SyriaIn 2016, the United Nations Country Team in Syria provided technical support to SDG localization efforts and to the preparation of the First National SDG Report for Syria led by the Planning and International Cooperation Commission (PICC). Throughout 2016, the UNCT participated in a few of the meetings of the National SDG Report Steering Committee convened by the Government of Syria. Some specialized UN organizations have offered their support to the inter-sectoral working groups established to prepare the first SDG report.

In 2017, with UN support the first national SDGs workshop was held on June 30th with the Government and the UN system to discuss implementation and monitoring challenges in connection to the Government’s recent plan to produce their First National SDG Report. The event was attended by close to 70 representatives from the Planning and International Cooperation Commission, and another twelve line-ministries, the Central Bureau of Statistics. Next steps agreed include, sustainable development reports being prepared at the local level for a number of Syrian governorates.

In furthering wider consultation on the SDG agenda with civil society, media, private sector, women and youth leaders the UN supported the Government in conducting three Local SDGs consultation workshops that brought together representatives from the 14 governorates of Syria. The workshops provided an opportunity to discuss and advocate for critical issues such as data availability, reliability, disaggregation and sharing of data, as well as applying an inclusive approach to identifying key development challenges and the way forward.

The UN has supported capacity building for staff members from the Planning Commission and from the Syrian National Statistics Office on SDG reporting. Technical staff members attended an in-depth training on how to use the Arab Development Portal.

Hasan, 6, starts his first day of grade 1 with a big smile at his school in Aleppo, which has just opened its doors for the first time in over seven years, with support from UNICEF. ©UNICEF/Syria/2018/Khudr Al- Issa

Further awareness raising about the Agenda 2030 and the SDGs; and further localisation of the SDGs in terms of data and quantified goals are required. Capacity building and training for government officials, local authorities and civil society organisations to ensure inclusive and comprehensive approach to SDGs and Agenda 2030 implementation is key in the Syria crisis context.