Letter of Understanding (LOU) between United Nations’ Children Fund (UNICEF), Odisha & Xavier University, Bhubaneswar -School of Sustainability undertakes the Alter Initiative: Mainstreaming SDG’s through communication strategies creating positive social norms.
Xavier University, Bhubaneswar, a leading university incorporated under the Government of Odisha, Th e Xavier University, Odisha Act, 2013, having its registered office at Plot No: 12(A), Nijigada, Kurki, Harirajpur-752050, 0disha. Xavier University, Bhubaneswar is a quality institute delivering quality management education. It offers a wide gamut of programs in Management, Sustainability, Communications, Commerce and other Disciplines. The University aims to fulfill its mission by continuing to introduce new programmes to groom visionary, com pet en t, committed, compassionate and v a I u e -based leaders. There is a clear intent to be the first to respond to the needs of the society and enable the building of sustainable communities that inspire the future of the State and the Country serving as an active agent of change.
Under the aegis of Xavier University, Bhubaneswar the School of Sustainability was established in the year 2015,to respond to the global call and initiated to promote sustainability through the means of education; and give meaning to the larger Jesuits call of social and environmental justice. This is the first school of its own kind in Asia, with a global ranking. The school is designed to spread awareness and need of sustainability education in all forms, to fulfill which the SDG’s play a critical role .The SDGs reveal that sustainable development in its diverse nature and form, provides useful and effective strategic and operational guidelines for driving and achieving the UN resolution, “Transforming our world: the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development,” A global movement and action is required to make this mission a reality.
The United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) is a United Nations agency responsible for providing humanitarian and developmental support to children around the world. Among others, UNICEF’s programmes emphasize on developing and strengthening community-level services to save children’s lives, to defend their rights, and to help them fulfil their potential, from early childhood through adolescence. UNICEF is committed to the cause of children and strategically intervenes on those issues which either directly or indirectly affect the children. The large-scale seasonal migration, which is witnessed mostly in western part of the state influences children in many ways. Their education is affected as they move with their parents to their place of work in another state. While sometime they get physically and mentally abused in the place of work, many of them also get engaged as child labor along with their parents in order to supplement the family income, a few of them become deprived of nutritious diet at the workplace which affects their physical and mental growth and they also get deprived of the basic health services like immunization, safe drinking water or hygienic toilet for defecation. However, without any systematic data, it becomes difficult for the state to address these issues. UNICEF has been playing critical role in generating evidence to foster and shape the state level dialogue and action around key child rights issues in Odisha. Through its policy advocacy related work UNICEF has been promoting equitable resource allocation, inclusive development, improved social accountability, increased social protection and use of evidence. UNICEF is also supporting the Government to ensure that the poorest households are included in Odisha’s development to reduce poverty and inequality.
The Objective of Xavier University, Bhubaneswar through its School of Sustainability and School of Communications seeks to partner with UNICEF (Odisha); to come together with an objective to create a wider understanding on SDG’s, communication, social and behaviour change on a range of areas that relate to child rights. Furthermore this partnership would also delve into understanding the nature, content and substance of social norms for social change through the lens of Sustainable Development and Communication strategies.