More than 50 students pulled an all-nighter in Honduras earlier this year to think up technical solutions to gender-based violence in the country’s first ever ‘diplohack’.The event, held in the capital city of Tegucigalpa, was a collaboration between the Swedish and Dutch embassies in Central America, UNESCO, Plan Honduras and the National Autonomous University of Honduras.

Today, Sweden is celebrating the Feast of Saint Lucia. It is a festival of light which brightens up the winter darkness. But elsewhere, where it’s not quite so dark, two Swedish embassies are illuminating the way with sustainable energy from another celestial body, namely the sun.

The One Planet Summit begins in Paris on 12 December, and Minister for International Development Cooperation and Climate, and Deputy Prime Minister of Sweden, Isabella Lövin will be there. Below she talks about the summit and a new Swedish climate initiative.

Sustainable solutions to the climate challenges of today and tomorrow are required. World leaders, researchers and innovative businesses are doing what they can to reduce our negative impact on the climate. But people’s awareness of climate change also needs to increase. With this in mind, the Swedish Institute launched the exhibition ‘Facing the Climate’, in which Swedish cartoonists offer some amusing, yet alarming reflections on climate change.

Farmers in four countries around Lake Victoria in eastern Africa are turning over a new leaf by stopping the clear-felling of trees and branching out into agroforestry. The move will not only improve their local environment and livelihoods, it just might bring them out of the woods when it comes to climate change.

Including men and encouraging positive dialogue on gender equality. This was the goal of the Nordic embassies in South Africa when they ran a social media campaign focusing on male gender roles, engagement and responsibility.

For several years now, the United Nations Association of Sweden has trained engaged young people to become ambassadors in their local area for the 2030 Agenda. Ahead of the 2017–2018 academic year, 17 members of the UN Association between the ages of 18 and 26 were trained to participate in its ambassador programme.

Global Goal 6 says that all people in all countries should have access to safe drinking water, basic sanitation and hand washing by 2030, but last year more than one third of the world’s population lacked access to a toilet. In Bolivia, more than five million people lack access to basic sanitation, and water is both in short supply and expensive. Since 2003, the Swedish Embassy in Bolivia has supported UNICEF Bolivia’s WASH programme. The programme centres on reaching the most excluded sectors of the population in remote, rural communities in order to reduce cultural, social, gender and geographic inequities.

A private enterprise and a humanitarian organisation have teamed up to bring a solar-powered irrigation system to small farming cooperatives in one of the poorest parts of Kenya.

In April 2017, the Ministry for Foreign Affairs (MFA) presented new country reports on human rights, democracy and the rule of law. The reports form part of the Government’s work to promote, prevent and influence developments in these areas. The reports can be read on the Government website. Here, I describe some of the overarching trends that can be identified based on the extensive material contained in the reports.