About Global Solidarity Challenge

Welcome to VIDEA’s 7th Global Solidarity Challenge!!

Are you ready for a challenge; one that will test your resilience, compassion, community networks and vigour? VIDEA is about to put your skills to the test through our annual fundraising event, the

Global Solidarity Challenge: SDG Edition!

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) aim for all nations to be held accountable for the elimination of poverty, inequalities and injustice as well as to take a firm stance on climate change both at home and abroad. This year, we are out to prove that we can all play a role in promoting social justice, equality and sustainability while also rising to the challenge of raising funds for VIDEA!

Are you up to the challenge?

It is time for GSC 2016: SDG Edition! We are dividing into six teams centered around the SDGs. That’s right! We are talking about -

Team Health
Team Gender
Team Poverty
Team Education
Team Sustainability
Team Human Rights

For one week, we will demonstrate just what support for the SDG’s can look like!

Each team will use the Global Solidarity Week to show solidarity in their own unique way and to raise funds to help to support VIDEA’s education, gender, and poverty reduction programmes in Canada and overseas. Learn more about these programs at the bottom of this page, or check out VIDEA’s website for more details!

Are you in? Want to join? It’s easy – just follow these steps!

Step 1:
Sign up and join a team! Follow the ‘Register’ link and join the team of your choice - choose wisely!

Step 2:
Choose your challenge! Here are a few ideas to get you started but feel free to be creative and come up with your own as well!

  • Live off of $1.25 a day - nearly 1/2 of the world’s population, more than 3 billion people, live on less than $2.50 a day. More than 1.3 billion live in extreme poverty — less than $1.25 a day.
  • Eat one food (a staple) for the whole week - more than half of the world’s food energy comes from a limited number of varieties of three “mega-crops”: rice, wheat, and maize. These three staple foods represent the primary form of sustenance for many families worldwide.
  • Only eat non-perishable foods - Each month, over 850,000 people turn to food banks for help in Canada. More than one-third of these people are children and youth!
  • Live in silence for a predetermined amount of time – 215 million children around the world are forced to engage in child labour and are denied the right to an education. Similarly, in most countries, women are less likely to have access to education, community leadership positions, or economic opportunities than are men. Live in silence to stand in solidarity with people whose voices are often muffled, misrepresented, or silenced.
  • Switch all your household responsibilities with your partner for the week - Women bear disproportionate responsibility for unpaid care work. Women devote 1 to 3 hours more a day to housework than men; 2 to 10 times the amount of time a day to care (for children, elderly, and the sick), and 1 to 4 hours less a day to market activities.
  • Don’t read anything for a week – including google maps, signs, newspapers or instructions - While the number of illiterate persons has fallen over the past decade, some 774 million adults – 64% of whom are women – lacked basic reading and writing skills in 2013. See how challenging life can be without this vital skill by taking this challenge!
  • Don’t use public washrooms for a week – Many adolescent girls face challenges accessing sanitary products or adequate washroom facilities, particularly at school. This leads to many girls missing significant amounts of school and often results in them dropping out when they are no longer able to keep up with the class. Stand in solidarity with girls and women who face barriers in engaging with their community or gaining an education by avoiding public washrooms for a week.
  • No electricity! - Having electricity makes a considerable difference in people’s lives, and is something that we can often take for granted. Having access to electricity means being able to study at night and gain a better education; having warmth on cold nights; having technology to improve agricultural productivity, increase entrepreneurial capabilities, and improve communication across towns, cities and countries; just to name a few. By limiting or entirely removing your access to electricity for a certain period of time, you can walk in the shoes of the 1.3 billion people who continue to live without access to electricity.
  • Walk to public water source each day OR limit water consumption to 10L/day this includes eating, drinking, and hygiene! Canadians currently use an average of 329 litres of water per person, per day — second only to the United States in developed countries, and more than twice as much as Europeans. In rural Ethiopia, people use on average around 5 -10 litres a day per person, largely because their access to this fundamental resource is highly restricted.
  • Zero waste challenge! Recycle, reuse, compost, and reduce consumption in an attempt to limit waste to 5 L in a week, or none at all if you really want to challenge yourself! – In 2012, the world generated 2.6 trillion pounds of garbage; the weight of roughly 7,000 Empire State Buildings. In British Columbia alone, the RCMP seized over 500,000 kg of e-waste being illegally shipped to developing countries from the Port of Vancouver in 2005. Challenge yourself to be hyper aware of the waste you produce, and think of new innovative alternatives to throwing things away. Buying groceries? Buy things will no packaging! Having a banana? Compost your peal rather than throwing it away!
  • Practice the 100 mile diet for a week – Our present industrialized food system requires food to be transported long distances and as a result, can cause everyday people to have large carbon foot prints. Buying locally grown produce strengthens your community by investing your food dollar close to home. The 100 mile diet allows participants to challenge themselves by only eating food that is produced locally within a 100 mile radius.

And for bonus points - to show that you are really committed!! Do these challenges along with one of the core challenges above!

  • Do your challenge with a child in your life (it’s a learning opportunity!)
  • Read 7 pieces of writing by women around the world throughout the week (unless of course, not-reading for the week is your challenge!)

Step 3:
Congratulations! You are all set up. Your team leader will be in touch with you in the next couple of days to go over next steps - don’t worry, nothing too scary!

Step 4:
Is there a prize for all of this hard work? Absolutely! You could win an opportunity to visit one of VIDEA’s projects in south or east Africa! Every time you raise $150 we will enter your name in a draw to win this trip!
PLUS, as a bonus, you can nominate another GSC participant to be entered into the draw at the end of the week; so each time you raise $150 you not only put yourself in the running for this free and incredible trip, but you also nominate somebody else who has demonstrated excellent GSC stamina!

The winner of the 2016 Global Solidarity Challenge will have the opportunity to see firsthand one of VIDEAs projects and learn just how important strong human rights work truly is! We guarantee that this experience will be eye opening and will help you to share what you have learned back home in Canada as well. What better way to do that then acting as a challenge leader in 2017?

In order to qualify for the coveted trip, winners must meet the following criteria at the time of travel:

  • Be 18 years of age or older;

  • Be in good health;
  • Committed to sharing their experiences by participating as a team leader in the 2017 Global Solidarity Challenge;

The prize includes:

  • Return flights to the project area;
  • In country road travel with VIDEA staff to projects;
  • In country hostel and village-style accommodation;
Does not include:
  • Anything not listed above, including: Vaccinations, medications or health insurance;
  • Travel insurance;
  • Spending money;
  • Food;

Huge thanks to Raptim Humanitarian Travel for once again sponsoring the flights for our 2016 GSC winner! Your ongoing support makes a huge difference!


So, why is solidarity important? The Global Solidarity Challenge allows VIDEA to continue to support development projects like these ones:

  • Youth Internship Programmes – throughout 2015/2016 VIDEA has provided 40 opportunities for young people to take part in the International Youth Internship Program (IYIP), and 20 opportunities for young Aboriginal youth to take part in the International Aboriginal Youth Internship programme, providing support and solidarity to overseas partners in Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, and South Africa;  
  • Walking with Wisdom: Leaders Now - Over the last two years, this project has supported Indigenous girls in the Pemberton Valley to develop their leadership skills through peer leadership training. This important work has increased the girls' confidence, skills and knowledge to engage and support other vulnerable girls in their communities to become active and engaged citizens;
  • Public engagement – every year VIDEA delivers a range of public engagement projects across BC that help community members to better understand global issues and to figure out how to make a difference. Through activities during International Development Week, supporting Aboriginal initiatives, the Fair Trade Fair, and many more, thousands of Canadians gain the opportunity to volunteer, take part, learn more, and become more active global citizens;
  • Education – VIDEA has delivered a vibrant education programme for over 35 years! Every year VIDEA provides opportunities for students and youth to learn about global issues through the development of new resources and learning opportunities. We provide mentorship and opportunities for volunteers, interns and practicum students to gain the experience they need to pursue careers in international development and social justice areas, and support to teachers and educators looking to integrate global issues into their learning experience;
  • Indigenous Knowledge – through this innovative programme Indigenous youth, Elders, and community members in Canada and in the south and east African countries that we work in are connected and better able to address the issues that they face in solidarity and by sharing knowledge passed down and reclaimed;



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