BREAKING: Challenge 18

Challenge 18 days of Sustainability & Leadership

Everyone invites you to “18 days of sustainability and leadership?”

What if we were to connect between:

Social Challenge + Sustainable Development Goals + Ted Talks = ???

So as one who also researches and specializes in sustainability and leadership I am happy to invite you to a challenging experience that will help you get through the days of the Corona in one piece, and here is the challenge:

The Sustainability and Leadership Challenge is a challenge that lasts 18 days and is in fact a social group process inspired by the Sustainable Development Goals – SDGs, which includes fascinating tasks, among them listening to relevant lectures (Ted lectures).

Every day, the group leader shares the daily challenges in WhatsApp. The challenge allows you to choose a short daily task from three tasks, and it opens you to a magical process of growth and new awareness, which disconnect you from the immediate comfort zone and develop in you a global awareness.

Many who have completed all 18 days and also started to lead a group of their own at the same time, report changes for the better.

Some of the comments shared by one of the groups I led at the end of the challenge:

“Thank you Sharon for inviting me to the challenge. Beyond the fact that I learned a lot from it, I feel it is an amazing exercise in awareness of what is happening in the world, how it affects me and how I can influence myself. Changing awareness of course also entails a change of consciousness. It is definitely a fascinating process. Thank you very much.”

“Hi everyone, I’m Yifat, I’m really happy to be here. I feel that in the last 18 days I have been inspired by issues that are very important to me. I feel that we must shout and bring these important issues to the daily agenda. If not for us then for the future generations …”

“Hello everyone, my name is Maya. I followed everything, did assignments, wrote in my notebook, told stories and abstained from sweets … It was fun and challenging, and mostly kept me focused on existing awareness for many days in a row. Thank you so much for the team effort and positive leadership, See you in lasting joy. ”

“I am Li-Or. I also did all the tasks and enjoyed it very much. The two most important things I got from the challenge are tools as a teacher of biology, ecology, sustainability and a new excuse to talk about sustainability with those close to me (who are already a little tired of me and everything that is environmental). Thank you all and you Sharon for the pleasant and encouraging leadership.”

Why 18 days?

The UN has mapped out 17 goals for which humanity must find out solutions, and the challenge18 includes another day “H+” or “חי” (in Hebrew) – for the future of humanity, a clear Jewish symbol of ‘Tikun Olam’.

Participating in the challenge raises awareness of the hot topics on the global agenda and allows participants at the end of the challenge to share their work and form thinking and action groups together.

Recommended. Persistence is an important part of success!

Why is it getting so viral?

Because it just works!

On one of the challenge days you are asked to create a group yourself and distribute the daily tasks to more people in your community, please note, the challenge allows each participant to practice leadership in such a simple method of copy and paste. This of course produces a huge virality… and also a bit of anger and reluctance… but since the challenge is flowing and so much fun then it is even addictive and a bit sad the day it ends. (But you can always join a new group and challenge yourself a little differently again.)

Brief background on the structure of the challenge:

Participants must do the daily practice, day in and day out.

Those who have not completed the practice within the 24 hours, are required to leave the group (but no one is actually taken out). Each must confirm that he did the practice to proceed to the next day.

The daily assignments are about 10-20 minutes long. There are  tasks that need to be done in writing or more simply watching a Ted talk.

There are also ongoing tasks that are much more challenging than the daily tasks, such as proper nutrition challenges (veganism, vegetarianism and avoidance from sweets), fitness and health ‘plank-it’, practicing listening consciousness, a better management of the use of mobile phones (named as ‘Digital pacifier’ and it is 8/16  cellular diet), and even stop or reduce at least disposable (yes, even now in the corona period, how is that even possible?).

A participant who has performed a task marks an appropriate emoji and the day number, signal to the group members that here he has already performed the daily task, which creates a sense of partnership in the group.

Of course everything is free and there are groups in Hebrew and English.

Where is the advertising done and how do you get registered?

So far the invitation to take part in the challenge has been made on social media (Facebook and LinkedIn) and the groups have included a wide range of people, from teachers, through members of social organizations, government representatives, academics, members of the US Transhumanist Party (USTP), non-profits working with the UN and even some of the lecturers of the Ted talks themselves.

What about schools?

Bored of closure? Tired of the zoom? Is there nothing interesting to do? No more.

Eighth-grade students at the Shimon Peres School of High-Tech and Art in Tel Aviv did something different. For 18 days, every evening at 8pm, they were given an intriguing self-task according to the principles of UN sustainability.
In the Zoom session and the feedback that the students filled out at the end of the challenge, in which they were asked, among other questions, “what value they received”, the students’ responses included the following comments:

“The value I got from the challenge is of being more considerate of the other people who need my things there and they don’t.”
“That more effort is needed.”
“I started appreciating things I didn’t know.”
“I got values ​​for the poor and homeless people and for things related to challenges.”
“I learned to show caring for the other, change, desire, perseverance, responsibility,”

The school’s principal, Mrs. Irit Cohen, wrote in feedback,

“What captured my heart in this ‘crazy’ program, which we are currently in, is that it corresponds with our vision and school work. Especially in promoting entrepreneurship and repairing the world actively, through groundbreaking pedagogy… It is important for me to develop value leadership alongside technological leadership, and the challenges we were exposed to in the program are inclusive and serve that purpose. It was only natural for us to connect to UN sustainable development goals.”

So why should you too?

The challenge is free and suitable for everyone. The challenge is especially suitable for change agents, sustainability people, climate professionals… and especially for hybrid learning, teachers who want to strengthen the emotional resilience of their students, and students who want to significantly influence society. And in general for anyone who is a little willing to challenge himself to step out of the comfort zone and looking to be part of an interesting and diverse group of people.

With regard to formal and informal education frameworks, the aim is to create a dialogue between educational organizations and various schools, in developing and developed countries, in which mixed groups of students are involved, such as a school in Israel and a school in Brazil or in Nepal and so on.

Link to Challenge 18 on the website of the Ministry of Education’s R&D:

https://www.mop.education/tool/ting-18-challenge

About the Author
Sharon Gal Or – Israeli Ambassador at U.S. Transhumanist Party. An Innovation, Sustainability & Leadership Management Strategist on creative education to government, non-profits, education, and arts bodies. Lectures in various international circles, leading and hosting training programs globally.
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