Sojourners recently became a member of the ONE campaign, which represents a new collaborative effort to rally Americans to fight the emergency of global AIDS and extreme poverty one person, one action at a time. The campaign is planning a series of public service announcements, concerts, and other events to raise the public profile of fighting global poverty. This summer and fall provide a decisive time-frame for determining the fate of these goals.
Five years ago 189 heads of state assembled at the United Nations to discuss the crisis of global poverty. At this Millennium Summit world leaders agreed to time-bound targets for addressing extreme poverty in its many dimensions - income poverty, hunger, disease, and lack of adequate shelter - while promoting gender equality, education, and environmental sustainability. They called these targets the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). In many ways the goals represent one of the worlds best hopes for putting economic globalization on a track toward fulfilling human dignity and protecting human life by linking religious values of economic justice with good governance and accountability.
Achieving these targets will require radically new global relationships, policies, and commitments. This is true of governments as well as civil society. Only an unprecedented mobilization of civil society can generate the necessary political and social will to achieve and then surpass these goals.