The C7 summit sets a high bar for the G7 to follow

Civil Society 7 Logo
Civil Society 7 Logo

Last week, Rachel Hickman, our Senior Public Affairs and Campaigns Officer, attended the C7 summit. Here’s a rundown of what happened and why it matters.

What is the C7 summit?

The C7 Summit is the main civil society event linked to the G7 process. The C7 is where civil society across the G7 countries can come together and discuss our priorities for the G7. These priorities are then shared with UK government and other G7 leaders in the form of a communiqué.

For Concern, It’s our chance to influence the G7 agenda and ensure that the most pressing issues faced by some of the world’s most vulnerable communities are represented. 

Why does the G7 matter?

The G7 brings together leaders from some of the biggest economies; the US, France, Germany, Japan, Italy, Canada and the UK to discuss and agree action on the world’s greatest challenges.

This year we need that international cooperation more than ever - and the G7 is the first major event where we can hope to see concrete actions to address global health, climate change, food security and economic recovery from the pandemic.

The UK will host this year’s G7, which will take place in Cornwall from 11th – 13th June. That means we have even more collective responsibility to ensure this year’s summit is a success.

For Concern, success means securing commitments from world leaders which meaningfully improve the lives of people living in extreme poverty.

What did the C7 cover?

The C7 tackled a breadth of issues including:

  • Sustainable economic recovery after the pandemic 
  • Global leadership to tackle the climate and ecological crises
  • A just and equitable approach to sharing vaccinations for Covid-19
  • Threats to democracy, open societies and democratic institutions
  • An agenda for racial justice

 

Concern participated in two focussed discussions. The first was on climate change and what international action we need to see to limit further global warming, and how to support those already most impacted by extreme weather. The second was on tackling rising hunger and malnutrition, that have both been exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic.

The importance of civil society for a successful G7 graphic. Image: @AlLallyFrancis
The importance of civil society for a successful G7 graphic. Image: @AlLallyFrancis

What is Concern calling for at the G7?

We are calling for the UK to use the G7 Presidency to:

  1. Lead global efforts to prevent food and nutrition crises, including committing at least $5 billion this year to stop millions from dying of starvation.
  2. Help shift the humanitarian system towards greater preparedness and anticipatory action to avoid future crises.
  3. Commit to preventing and treating undernutrition, diet-related chronic disease and nutrient deficiencies, and prioritising access to nutritious food. We are asking each G7 country to make an ambitious financial commitment at the Nutrition for Growth Summit in 2021.
  4. Significantly increase commitments to climate finance, including achieving the 50% target for climate change adaptation.
  5. Prioritise the countries and communities most vulnerable to the effects of climate change.

 

You can read the C7 communique, which came out of discussions at the C7 Summit, to see our full set of recommendations.

What is next?

A clear message from the C7 was the interconnectedness of the world’s biggest challenges. How can we progress global health when malnutrition undermines vaccine efficacy? And how can we respond to rising hunger without also addressing its root causes, such as conflict and climate change?

As global challenges grow in scale, so must our response. For this G7 to be successful, we need to be more ambitious and connect with each other more than ever. That’s why Concern has joined Crack the Crises Coalition to call on world leaders to crack the crises of climate, Covid-19 and injustice.

How can I help get world leaders to act?

You can join the Crack the Crises #WaveOfHope campaign. Up and down the country, people are putting up homemade ‘hands’ with messages of hope in their windows. If thousands of us take part, the Prime Minister won’t be able to ignore our call for a healthy, fair and green recovery process that works for everyone.

All you need to do is draw, paint or print a hand and put it in your window. Then take a photo and post it on Twitter or Instagram using #WaveOfHope or email it to [email protected]. The pictures will all be collated into a photo gallery which will be displayed at the G7.

Find more inspiration; download the supporter toolkit here.

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