APPLICATION GUIDANCE

MOBILIZE, INSPIRE, AND CONNECT

Application fields for Mobilize, Inspire, and Connect Award Categories

To help plan your application, please review the application questions below. If you would like to access this information in other languages, please use the translate option on the page.

THE 2022 APPLICATION CATEGORIES ARE:

Mobilize:  Initiatives that mobilize hundreds of thousands, or even millions of individuals, to take action for the SDGs. Initiatives with high impact, typically involving collective and coordinated actions that mobilize people to flip the script on how we achieve 2030 Agenda.

Inspire: Initiatives that harness the power of creativity and/or innovation to inspire a shift in behaviour for the SDGs. Initiatives and inspirational campaigns that flip the script and demonstrate impact on shifting individual behavior and/or public policies.

Connect:   Initiatives that connect diverse partners, bridging the gap between citizens and institutions, to increase progress on the SDGs. Initiatives that flip the script on how people, organizations, and institutions connect with each other to harness commitments and accountability towards the SDGs.

How to Apply

To apply for the UN SDG Action Award please prepare a response to each section of the application form. All sections and questions are mandatory, except for those marked as ‘optional’. Only complete applications will be considered by the selection committee. Please note that the strongest entries will offer clear supporting evidence, such as photos and videos and endorsements from participants in your initiative.

This form has been prepared to assist applicants to prepare their application before submitting via the online application form if needed. For applicants encountering challenges with access to the internet, this form can be completed and sent in by post. Please see the instructions at the end if you need to submit a postal application.

 Information you provide here will not be visible to the public

  • Focal Point Name
  • Focal Point Email

  • Name/Title of the initiative
  • Country where your initiative is implemented
  • City (optional)
  • Team/organization behind the initiative
  • What type of organization is leading the initiative?
    • Academia
    • Activist
    • Business
    • Civil Society Organization
    • Creative Industries
    • Entrepreneur
    • Faith-Based
    • International Organization
    • Local/Regional Government
    • Media
    • National Government
    • UN
    • Youth
    • Other
  • Social Media handles of organization/initiative
    • Facebook
    • Twitter
    • Instagram
    • Linkedin
    • Tiktok
    • Other
  • Link to your website or other digital platforms (optional)
  • How did you hear about the  SDG Action Awards?
    • Social Media
    • UN SDG Action Campaign Newsletter
    • UN SDG Action Campaign Website
    • Word of mouth
    • Recommendation from a colleague/partner
    • Newsletter from a network you are a part of
    • Other
  • Category to which you are applying
    • Mobilize: Initiatives that mobilize hundreds of thousands, or even millions of individuals, to take action for the SDGs. Initiatives with high impact,typically involving collective and coordinated actions that mobilize people to flip the script on how we achieve 2030 Agenda.
    • Inspire: Initiatives that harness the power of creativity and/or innovation to inspire a shift in behaviour for the SDGs. Initiatives and inspirational campaigns that flip the script and demonstrate impact on shifting individual behavior and/or public policies.
    • Connect: Initiatives that connect diverse partners, bridging the gap between citizens and institutions, to increase progress on the SDGs. Initiatives that flip the script on how people, organizations, and institutions connect with each other to harness commitments and accountability towards the SDGs.
  • How is your initiative a good fit for the selected category for this award
  • Which of the SDGs does your initiative focus on
    • List of SDGs 1-17
    • All SDGs

Flip the Script is the idea of doing things differently to achieve real impact.

  • Pitch us your initiative:  (up to 200 words)
    • What is the aim of this initiative, when and how did it begin, what problem/challenge are you targeting?
    • What is the process/How do you do what you do?
    • What is the impact/What have you achieved?
    • How is your initiative innovative/transformative?
    • How can your initiative go to scale? Has your initiative been replicated elsewhere?
  • How is your initiative ‘Flipping the Script’ and rewriting the story on what is possible? What new narrative does it have the power to create?(100 words)

  1. Impact: What is the impact of the initiative? (e.g. numbers of people mobilized, number of sectors involved, policies/legislation/budgets impacted, tangible shifts in behaviors) (200 words)
  2. Approach: How innovative is this initiative’s strategy? Is it a breakthrough idea, are you approaching things in a totally new way? Is the initiative also engaging those at risk of being left behind? (200 words)
  3. Scalability/Replicability: Does this initiative have the potential to be scaled up and/or be replicated in other contexts to accelerate the achievement of the Goals? Is there any evidence that scaling up or replication is already taking place? (200 words)
  4. How would winning a UN SDG Action Award affect the initiative? Have you already received recognition or awards? (200 words)

Using your written pitch from ‘The Story of your Initiative’ section, please create and share a short powerful video about your initiative. Up to 2 minutes in landscape mode. Please paste the link to the video viewing platform – such as Vimeo or YouTube, with open viewing accessibility

Please upload up to 3 photos that help visualize the initiative and its impact.  Please also link any additional videos that you feel help to tell the story of your initiative - ensuring there is open viewing access.

  • Supporting Documentation: Please share links to articles,  Social media feeds, public recognition or public comments that confirm the impact of your initiative. (optional)
  • Supporting Videos: Please also link any additional videos that you feel help to tell the story of your initiative
  • Recommendation Letters: Please provide us with a recommendation letter from a partner who can confirm the scope and impact of the initiative. All recommendation letters should be a maximum of 1 page in length and include the name, position, signature and contact information of the referee. Please use official letterhead. Please request that your referee address some or all of the following points in their recommendation letter:
    • In what capacity do you know the applicant, and for how long?
    • Describe the applicant’s commitment to, and engagement with, the SDGs.
    • Describe how the applicant’s initiative has had an outstanding impact on the achievement of the SDGs.
    • Is the approach innovative? Does it have the potential to be scaled up and replicated? Is it being scaled up or replicated already?
    • Why are you supporting this initiative?
    • How could the UN SDG Action Award impact this initiative?

I consent to my personal data being stored and processed for the purpose of SDG Action Awards program. The contents submitted in this form may be used for public promotion, however personal data will be protected. I also consent to my data being used by the UN SDG Action Campaign for establishing contact. I will be given the option to unsubscribe from future mailings unrelated to the SDG Action Awards. My data will not be used for commercial purposes. I may withdraw my consent to the use of my personal data at any time by contacting support@sdgactioncampaign.org.

  • By submitting this form, I agree to the above-stated Terms and Conditions.

Now that you have prepared your application – please submit each response here

Offline applications may be submitted by applicants in cases where access to the online application form is not accessible to individuals experiencing bandwidth limitations.

To submit an offline application please send all documentation by post to the address below before the application deadline. Only applications which are postmarked on or before the application deadline will be considered by the selection committee. Please note that all postal fees are the responsibility of the applicant.

Application Deadline:

8 May 2022, with the application portal closing at 23:59 EST.

Application Mailing Address:
United Nations SDG Action Campaign 
SDG Action Awards
Platz der Vereinten Nationen 1
153113 Bonn, Germany

Amina J. Mohammed

Deputy Secretary-General
Executive Office of the Secretary-General (EOSG)

Ms. Amina J. Mohammed is the Deputy Secretary-General of the United Nations and Chair of the United Nations Sustainable Development Group.

Prior to her appointment, Ms. Mohammed served as Minister of Environment of the Federal Republic of Nigeria where she steered the country’s efforts on climate action and efforts to protect the natural environment.

Ms. Mohammed first joined the United Nations in 2012 as Special Adviser to former Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon with the responsibility for post-2015 development planning. She led the process that resulted in global agreement around the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the creation of the Sustainable Development Goals.

Ms. Mohammed began her career working on the design of schools and clinics in Nigeria. She served as an advocate focused on increasing access to education and other social services, before moving into the public sector, where she rose to the position of adviser to four successive Presidents on poverty, public sector reform, and sustainable development.

Ms. Mohammed has been conferred several honorary doctorates and has served as an adjunct professor, lecturing on international development. The recipient of various global awards, Ms. Mohammed has served on numerous international advisory boards and panels. She is the mother of six children and has two grandchildren.

MAME BALLA

ARTIST, SINGER, SONGWRITER, MUSIC ENTERTAINER, PRODUCER

Mame Balla is a Senegalese singer, songwriter, and music producer based in Europe who sings about peace, environmental issues, the experiences of growing up in West Africa and more.

Mame Balla has worked with Bouba Ndour, producer and brother of the famous singer Youssou Ndour, with whom he released two internationally successful albums. Between his solo career and the former music groups Dancehall Masters and Darou Salam, Mame Balla has partnered with international artists of different music genres such as Senegalese pop singer Viviane, dancer Ndeye Geye, hip hop group Gokh-Bi System, and Dutch-Albanese rapper Jon Tarifa. He has also partnered with Polish and German artists for a jazz project, and performed with Congolese afrobeat singers in the Netherlands. Between 1999 and 2004, Mame Balla and his former group Dancehall Masters received awards as Best New Group and Best Group in The Gambia; and also received the prize Prix de l’intégration at a Senegalese hip-hop awards. Mame Balla took a course in music production at the State of Mic Studio in The Gambia. Performing with Pape Samory and Issa Ndiaye. 

Katlego Kai Kolanyane-Kesupile

CULTURAL ARCHITECT, COMMUNICATIONS SPECIALIST AND PERFORMANCE ARTIST

Katlego Kai Kolanyane-Kesupile is an international award-winning cultural architect, communications specialist, performance artist, development practitioner and human rights advocate. OkayAfrica named her one of the 100 Most Influential Women of African Descent in 2018. Her accolades include being nominated for the US State Department’s International Women of Courage Award, a TED Fellow, Queen’s Young Leader, Chevening Scholar, Mandela Washington Fellow, and OutRight’s UN Religion Fellow. She holds a Sociology Masters in Human Rights, Culture, and Social Justice, with a focus on Disability Rights and Public Space Design, from Goldsmiths University of London, UK. Her published writing spans theatre, academic texts and policy analyses. 

MARINA PONTI

DIRECTOR OF THE UN SDG ACTION CAMPAIGN
Ms. Ponti is the Director of the UN SDG Action Campaign since July 2018.
 
Prior, Ms. Ponti served as Global Deputy Director and Regional Director for Europe for over a decade and was at the vanguard of innovative campaign initiatives, building multi-stakeholder coalitions, mobilizing resources and forging long-term partnerships between civil society organizations, local government, parliamentarians, media, the private sector and the UN.
Ms. Ponti served as an advocacy and resource mobilization specialist with UNICEF and the UN Secretariat. She also was Chief Operating Officer of Catapult -a girls and women’s right crowdfunding platform and as Special Advisor on post-2015 during the final negotiations of the Agenda 2030 for the global network Social Watch.
 
Ms. Ponti holds an MA in Political Science from the University of Milan and has completed an executive education programme from INSEAD in Global Management, Finance and Partnerships.

Ulrika Modéer

Assistant Secretary-General, Assistant Administrator and Director of the Bureau of External Relations and Advocacy (BERA) United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)

Ms. Ulrika Modéer officially began her role on 20 August 2018 as UNDP’s Assistant Administrator and Director of the Bureau of External Relations and Advocacy. In this role she leads the organization in nurturing and growing key relationships with Member States, and new and emerging partners, as well as lead UNDP’s communications and advocacy, as it works to realize the vision of the Sustainable Development Goals. Ms. Modéer previously served as Sweden’s State Secretary for International Development Cooperation and Climate and has been instrumental in reshaping the country’s international development cooperation to support the achievement of the 2030 Agenda. She combines a strong policy background with parliamentary and civil society experience and has had several assignments in Latin America (Bolivia, Guatemala) and Africa (Mozambique/South Africa). Ms. Modéer holds a BA in International Relations from the University of Gothenburg, Sweden.

TOLU OLUBUNMI

FOUNDER AND CEO, LIONS WRITE

Tolu Olubunmi is a Nigerian-born, American-raised chemical engineer turned political strategist, social entrepreneur and public speaker. She is the founder and CEO of the social impact venture, Lions Write. In 2018, Tolu was tapped by the Director-General of the UN Migration Agency (IOM) for a special appointment as Advisor to the UN Department of Global Communications and Manager of the Climate Action Campaign ActNow.  Tolu has established and led numerous NGOs and campaigns focused on education, migration, economic inclusion, sustainability, and climate change. She has worked closely with leaders in government, the private sector, and civil society to shift culture, influence public policy and build strategic and mutually beneficial partnerships – she served on the World Economic Forum’s Migration Council, co-founded Immigrant Heritage Month, and has helped draft and implement U.S. immigration policies.  

Tolu sits on the Board of Directors of the Anti-Defamation League, Board of Directors of USA for IOM. In 2015, the World Economic Forum named her one of 15 Women Changing the World and an Outstanding Woman Entrepreneur. Her inspiring personal story and work have been profiled by several media outlets, including BBC, MSNBC, TIME, CBS, US News and World Report. Tolu is an inaugural Leadership Institute Fellow at the Center for American Progress and holds a chemistry-engineering degree from Washington and Lee University. 

His Excellency Mr. Khalifa Jassim Al-Kuwari

Director General

Qatar Fund for Development

Since 2014, Khalifa Jassim Al-Kuwari has led the establishment, strategy-setting, partnerships, and funding programs of the Qatar Fund for Development in developing countries. Previously, Mr. Al-Kuwari was the Chief Operating Officer and Executive Director – Joint Venture and International Business of the Qatar Investment Authority (QIA). He has been appointed to the boards of leading organisations, including: Harrods, Volkswagen Group, Fairmont Raffles Group, Songbird Real Estate, Qatar Exchange, Katara Hospitality, and Mowasalat. He holds an Executive MBA in Business Administration from the London Business School, an MBA in Accounting from Cleveland State University and a Bachelor of Business Administration from Qatar University. He graduated from the Leadership Development Program at Harvard Business School and Qatar Leadership Center.