SDG Finance Collaborative Assemble in Bangkok
[ News and Trend of the Week ]
This past week, finance experts from over 30 United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Country Offices across the globe assembled in Bangkok for the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) Finance Collaborative.
The SDGs, established in 2016 “reflect a systemic approach to sustainable development that embodies economic, social and environmental progress and leaves no one behind”. Through plenary and parallel sessions, attendees communicated on ideas and plans to mobilize and manage financing as well as measure the impact of relevant investments. Following the discussions in Bangkok, participants will focus on the next steps of for the SDG Finance Collaborative moving forward.
Special Olympics Asia Pacific Launches New Fitness App
for Individuals with Intellectual Disabilities
[ Tech and Innovation ]
Special Olympics Asia Pacific has recently launched SPROUT, which is a fitness app geared towards individuals with intellectual disabilities (ID).
Through the gamification of exercises, the app empowers these individuals whilst allowing caregivers to get more involved in their dependant’s physical lifestyle. Research was conducted on athletes in Special Olympics Singapore to ensure the design was fun and accessible, and the app closely follows the Special Olympics FIT5 framework. This tackles an important health issue as people with ID tend to be more sedentary as they face social isolation which takes away opportunities to stay active in a recreational context.
Impact Investing Trends in Asia
[ Impact Investing ]
While Asia has been slower in the uptake of social investing compared to the West, newer innovations in the social investing sphere have helped closed the gap. These include efforts from governments to establish investment funds and businesses increasing engagement through social enterprise mentoring and investing. For example, China, now the second largest green-bond market in the world, launched its first green bond in 2015. Hong Kong also recently committed to a $100 billion dollar sovereign green bond grant program.
China’s Extradition Plan in Hong Kong
[ People x Places ]
In light of China’s plans to pass laws allowing criminal suspects to be sent to mainland China for trial, an estimated 130,000 protesters turned out to march and protest.
The Occupy Central Movement, a Hong Kong civil disobedience campaign launched in 2014, remains active even today. Also known as the Umbrella Movement, the nonviolent campaign featured a massive crowds carrying yellow umbrellas symbolic of the movement in a peaceful three hour march through Causeway Bay and Wanchai.
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