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Côte d’Ivoire- MDG’S: Visit from Queen Mathilde of Belgium Millennium Development Goals (MDGs)

Abidjan, IVORY COAST

Monday 04 to Wednesday 06 March 2023

 

United Nations Ambassador since 2016 to promote the UN’s Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) and as part of her mandate Queen Mathilde of Belgium carries out one humanitarian mission a year, so she chose Côte d’Ivoire this year.

Arriving in Abidjan on Sunday March 03 at around 7:00 pm, she began an intense 3-day program the following day, with an average of 4 field visits per day, covering many kilometers in Abidjan and outlying towns to promote the MDGs and highlight projects and issues.

 

The Queen was able to exchange experiences in the field of sustainable development with local Ivorian players in areas such as education, gender equality, the fight against poverty, global warming, the circular economy and more.

Here are just some of the highlights of an instructive and committed working visit!

Monday, March 04, 2024

Welcomed on arrival by the Ivorian Minister of Planning and Development, who has accompanied her on all her visits, The Queen met the President of the Republic of Côte d’Ivoire and his wife Mme Dominique Ouattara. Naturally, she began her visit at the Bingerville Mother and Child Hospital (30km from Abidjan), inaugurated in 2018 by the Children of Africa Foundation, chaired by the First Lady. The HME hospital has 130 beds. A quarter of patients  come from disadvantaged backgrounds and are fully supported by the foundation.

Queen Mathilde of Belgium then visited a sewing workshop run by the NGO CAVOEQUIVA in the Abidjan suburb of Adjamé. The NGO’s transit center provides shelter and training for young women who are victims of trafficking or other forms of violence, and who have been deprived of their homes.

Under the theme of child care and the fight against gender inequality, this Monday was a very moving event.

Queen Mathilde ended her first day’s visit with a round-table discussion at the Université Félix Houphouët-Boigny-Cocody, where she spoke with young entrepreneurs and students involved in concrete actions to achieve the 17 sustainable development goals set by the United Nations.

Tuesday, March 05, 2024

On this second day, Queen Mathilde of Belgium visited the Mamie Faitai school built from recycled plastic bricks in Abidjan-Yopougon.

It was an educational visit, closely blending educational issues with those relating to sustainable development.

The circular economy was particularly well illustrated through the recycling of plastic waste to build schools, clean up the capital and pay the women who collect this plastic waste.

She then took a boat to the mangrove swamps to visit the local fishing community of Grand-Lahou, threatened by rising water levels. 150 kilometers from Abidjan, ecological concerns were discussed: rising waters are a daily danger for the population, who regularly suffer from flooding. Aboard a pirogue, Queen Mathilde witnessed the erosion of the village’s coastline, which is gradually being swallowed up by the waters. “This fishing village, 150 km west of Abidjan, loses between 1 and 2 meters of land to the ocean every year. Soon, as part of the World Bank’s West African Coastal Area Management (WACA) program, stabilization work will begin to protect the coast at Lahou-Kpanda and four surrounding villages,” comments the royal court on its Instagram account.

 

Next up is sport, another sustainable development objective set by the United Nations: San-Pedro and its Laurent-Pokou stadium. To promote access to sport and equality or inclusion through sport, the sovereign donned her best sneakers and kicked a ball around.

Wednesday March 06, 2024

A visit to the Méagui cocoa planters’ cooperative was on the agenda.

Queen Mathilde visited a plantation where she was able to observe and…participate at certain stages in the production of cocoa beans.

At the end of the visit, Queen Mathilde left for Brussels in the evening.

In her capacity as ambassador for the United Nations (UN) Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the Queen’s journey was rich in exchanges of experience with Ivorian partners.  A total of 13 of the 17 SDGs were addressed, including health and well-being, gender equality, decent work and economic growth, responsible consumption and production, and climate action.

These 17 goals were adopted by the UN General Assembly in 2015 as part of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. They aim to promote sustainable economic, social and environmental development worldwide.

There are 17 other SDO ambassadors around the world including Forest Whitaker, Black Pink among others.

Humaniterre, humanitarian and sustainable development media.

 

Source l’Avenir de Belga

Photo by POOL ERIC LALMAND / BELGA MAG / Belga via AFP

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