From Imagination to Reality
By Georgia Chen S3AT(4)
Not long ago, professional Master of Ceremony Yoee Leung visited HKUGAC to conduct an exhilarating talk about valuable presentation tips. Other than that, she has also led a workshop on behalf of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) to introduce our students to the organization’s many new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
Also known as the Global Goals, the SDG’s are a set of 17 goals created by the United Nations in 2015. Their aims include things such as ending poverty, combating climate change, and promoting gender equality around the world. Many of these SDG’s have gradually become more prominent in countries around the world, and many corporations—including Hong Kong’s own MTR—have worked to incorporate some of the SDG’s into their own operations.
To help our students get a better idea of what SDG’s are and how they affect our lives, Ms. Leung led a group of them in an intriguing simulation all about SDG’s dubbed “The 2030 SDGs Card Game”. The game revolves around how our actions and decisions affect our future in 2030. The students were divided into separate teams and each team was given a set of cards, which includes a ‘goal card’, ‘money cards’ (5 pieces, $500 total), ‘time cards’ (12 pieces, available time until 2030), and ‘project cards’. The students could use the cards to do certain things, such as saving the environment or assembling new industrial corporations. The main objective was to see if their actions were able to achieve their goal in their ‘goal card’. In addition to that, there was also a ‘World Condition Meter’ introduced into the game which would change depending on the measures that the students establish along the way.
As our students were playing, they displayed a myriad of different skills as they attempted to solve different obstacles. Some groups focused more on economic growth, some focused on environmental protection, and some even reached out to help other groups when they finished early. Soon, competition just dissipated as everyone was helping one another. By the time they finished, all their hard work had paid off. Starting off with a second-class society and mediocre ecological conservation, the students managed to make the economy blossom while also strengthening environmental health. In the end, not only did their attain a higher GDP than before, they also accomplishing their respective goals.
Our students no doubt learnt a lot from this simulation, but they were also left conflicted as well. As one student explained, “After seeing the other groups help me, I’m convinced that the world is filled with kind and helpful people. However, I can’t help but also remind myself that the world is not what it seems.”
Despite the troubling paradox, the students were inarguably moved by each other’s selfless teamwork, as they expressed genuine gratitude towards each other. “The environment and society can’t thrive without the economy, that’s a fact,” said another participant. “But without my teammates, I don’t think I could succeed either.”
Thanks to Ms Leung, our students have certainly learned a valuable lesson through the workshop. It’s clear that there are still many problems facing human civilization. So we, as global citizens, should take responsibility and also start making a difference by solving these problems one by one. Hopefully, through collaboration and teamwork, we can actually improve our world by 2030.