Photo: Ana Gujabidze/UNDP

Thousands of Georgians gathered in the town of Ambrolauri today to take part in the country’s second national Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Festival, initiated and organized by the United Nations in Georgia. The slogan of this year’s edition of the Festival echoed the core theme of sustainable development: to “Leave No One Behind.”

The President of Georgia, Salome Zourabichvili, addressed the participants and guests of the Festival at the grand opening in the evening.

The newly appointed United Nations Resident Coordinator in Georgia, Sabine Machl, stressed the continuous efforts of the United Nations to support Georgia in achieving its national SDGs.

“The UN agencies active in Georgia are covering a wide range of areas related to the five pillars of sustainable development – People, Planet, Peace, Prosperity and Partnership,” she said. “Our work rests on strong cooperation with our partners – the Government of Georgia, local self-governments, civil society, the private sector, academia and all development partners in the international community.”

The SDG Festival transformed public space in Ambrolauri into a colourful display of activities illustrating the country’s efforts to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. The busy agenda included sport activities, interactive seminars and workshops, talks and exhibitions featuring SDG activists and supporters from different walks of life – writers, artists, researchers, students, teachers, school children, farmers, diplomats and politicians.

“It’s no accident that the SDG Festival is taking place this year in Racha,” said Louisa Vinton, Head of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in Georgia. “Like so many other locations in Georgia, it has vast development potential but needs to overcome the challenges of rural poverty, depopulation and climate change to realize the promise of peace and prosperity. We are confident that the festival will build public understanding and enthusiasm for our shared responsibility ‘to leave no one behind.’”

The Festival concluded with a fair of local agriculture products and an open-air concert featuring well-known Georgian artists. It was organized with the support of a wide range of partners, including UN agencies and donors, the Government of Georgia, the governments of Switzerland, Austria and Denmark, the administration of the Racha-Lechkhumi-Kvemo Svaneti region, Ambrolauri Municipality, and many others.

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Photo: Vladimir Valishvili/UNDP
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Photo: Vladimir Valishvili/UNDP
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Photo: Vladimir Valishvili/UNDP
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Photo: Vladimir Valishvili/UNDP
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Photo: Brendan Jackson/UNDP
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Photo: Brendan Jackson/UNDP
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Photo: Ana Gujabidze/UNDP
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Photo: Vladimir Valishvili/UNDP
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