Pakistan: Sustaining Development – 2016

Human stories behind the SDGs told through Photography

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) are central to our work at the United Nations as we work to make this world a better place. There are numerous inspiring stories to be told, but sometimes words are not enough. Photography can bring these stories to life instantly before our eyes.

On United Nations Day, we launched the photo exhibition “Pakistan: Sustaining Development — Human Stories through Photography” at Lok Virsa in Islamabad. This collection of 102 outstanding photographs provided by Agence France-Presse (AFP) showcases human stories related to development in Pakistan. We hope these powerful photographs enhance awareness of Pakistan’s development priorities and inspire Pakistanis to take action themselves.  They also remind ourselves of the work that needs to be done to achieve the targets of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The exhibition was jointly developed by Agence France-Presse (AFP), the European Union (EU) and the United Nations, with support from the Embassy of France in Pakistan and UK Aid, and was inaugurated by Mr. Sartaj Aziz, Advisor to the Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs. Organized in 17 collections, the exhibition connects photographs to the 17 SDGs and raises awareness about the goals and the United Nations’ efforts for development in Pakistan.

“This exhibition reflects beautifully the diversity of Pakistan, but it also visualizes the common humanity and spirit of all people here. The UN team in Pakistan hopes through its own diversity and through support to the sustainable development goals, to help all Pakistanis meet their own shared goals.” 

Neil Buhne, United Nations Resident Coordinator

“It is a great honor for AFP Pakistan to present, for the first time, our photos directly to the Pakistani public. We have deliberately chosen to focus on the human angle of the story, showing the reality of life as it is now for millions of Pakistanis, be they shopkeepers, teachers, farmers, children, or immigrants abroad. It also documents the extraordinary resilience of ordinary Pakistanis in the face of tragic events like floods.”

Amélie Herenstein, AFP Bureau Chief, Pakistan and Afghanistan

“In Pakistan, the EU has been for many years working closely with the Government, the private sector and the civil society to tackle the challenges the country faces. We will continue this strong partnership, in cooperation with the United Nations, ensuring that our assistance contributes to Pakistan achieving the SDGs for the benefit of each citizen of this country.”

Jean-François Cautain, Ambassador of the EU to Pakistan

Promoting and raising awareness about the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the global blueprint of development for the next 15 years, is a top priority for UN system in Pakistan. This creative effort provided an important visual narration of the challenges and opportunities we face together as we strive to achieve the targets of the Sustainable Development Goals in Pakistan and in the world.