In September 2015, world leaders set an exciting course for the future of human development with the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These 17 Global Goals that make up the SDGs were designed to make sure that everyone is taken care of and no one is left behind.

The 17 goals may be ambitious, but they speak to the positivity and hope that the world has expressed towards what we all want for our collective future.

What are the 17 goals?

Millions of people were involved in crafting this global agenda - governments, civil society, the private sector, academia, the UN system and individual people, including children and youth.

All of these people and more are now actively involved in implementing this agenda, starting from small communities, all the way up to the global level. This work aims to make sure that all people, including all children, will live in a safer, cleaner, more equal and prosperous world by the year 2030.

UNICEF is committed to being a key part of this important journey, working with a diverse group of partners to see that the Goals deliver results for every child and for generations to come. 


Key facts

  • The 2030 Agenda includes 17 Global Goals addressing the social, economic and environmental dimensions of sustainable development.
  • Attached to the Goals are 169 concrete targets measured by 232 specific indicators.
  • 35 of these indicators are directly related to children.
  • Most countries have insufficient data to assess whether they are on track to achieve the SDG targets for children.
  • Available data show an alarming number of countries needing to speed up progress to reach global targets.
  • Within countries, particular groups of children are at greater risk of being left behind such as children from households experiencing poverty, those living in rural areas or – often – adolescent girls.
  • UNICEF, as the global leader of data for children, is the custodian for 7 global SDG indicators and co-custodian for a further 10 indicators.