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Posts tagged as “MUN Impact”

TASMUN 2018 & The Sustainable Development Goals

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By: Si Yun Ee, Delegate at Taipei American School and MUN Impact Staff Writer

 

In April 2018, I had the honor of serving as TASMUN’s (Taipei American School Model United Nations) Secretary-General. The ninth annual TASMUN took on a very experiential, bold, and unique approach to Model United Nations (MUN) to say the least.

 

Unlike the conventional MUN conferences, where committees ranged from the usual few that were similar and topics were repeated from conference to conference; my Secretariat team and I worked hard to place a strong emphasis for the conference, on something we shared as a common passion - The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

This year’s conference theme was MUN Impact. By having MUN Impact as the center of our conference, we hoped not only to shed light on the newly growing MUN Impact community and organization, but also to raise awareness regarding the purpose of a united community, passionate about global issues to solve the global goals (SDGs)  we have set before us. As such, each of our committees were named after a particular sustainable development goal that we found to be relatable to our participants or interesting and approachable to our general audience. Each committee, would therefore focus on topics related to that one goal and specialize in issues of that area.   

 

 

 

In addition, committee topics were inspired and sifted through Sustainable Development Goals targets and indicators, tweaked so that they were not overly complex or broad, but yet fresh and challenging enough for our conference participants. We hoped that by doing so, our participants would not only be more aware of the SDGs and their existence, but to gain a particular expertise or find an interest or passion in a particular SDG that may spur action, inspiration and impact.

 

Call it revolutionary, non conforming, different, unique or weird; a focus on the SDGs to such an extreme from committee names, or to specified topics. Over the two days of the conference, participants told us how much they enjoyed the specificity of topics they enjoyed, the knowledge they have grasped and gained expertise in; most importantly, an understanding of how much each SDG impacted our world. The SDGs were no longer just a far reaching foreign concept to them, it is now an action prompting question waiting to be solved.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As Secretary-General for TASMUN IX, I hope to leave a message on behalf of my Secretariat team, to both our conference participants and MUN participants worldwide:

As we seek to evolve the culture of Model UN by assisting each other in understanding the value of action and activism especially in these tumultuous times, the focus of this year’s conference structure not only strives to promote impact through MUN, but also to evaluate and to take further consideration of the Sustainable Development Goals. In taking initiative to achieve the SDGs, the power of impact through MUN will be prominent - and that is what I hope we can all take away and share with those who have not seen what we, as a commu

nity is capable of changing. Let TASMUN IX be the first change, non conforming to the norms of what MUN may mean to you. Let yourself be the living and breathing impact of MUN, youths who contribute to our global community, and a team of activists capable of rousing change that we so desperately need.

 

 

History made at UNODC’s E4J MUN Workshop

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MUN conference managers, educators, academics and UN field officers gathered at the United Nations in Vienna this past May and held a series of conversations that had never before taken place. There was a palpable sense of history being made. We had been invited to participate in UNODC’s Education for Justice MUN workshop where we had the opportunity to get to know one another, look for ways we could support each other’s work, and most importantly, to figure out how to best educate MUN delegates on UNDOC mandates. With the help of the wonderful Best Delegate team, we spent three days in enriching conversations, both during the day, over lunch and breaks, and well into each evening.

 

E4J, with generous funding from the state of Qatar through the 2014 Crime Congress in Doha, decided that a powerful way to educate youth on UNODC mandates (many of them linked to SDG 16: Peace, Justice and Strong Institutions) was through MUN. The E4J team validated the MUN community by asking for input, and going back to their drawing board a number of times in 2017 to refine and perfect a series of resources that would be used on a global scale. By bringing a cross section of participants to Vienna, field officers and UN officials began to appreciate the power of this enormous MUN network. And MUN programs gave serious thought to how to best guide research, discussions and debate around the things the UN wants all of us to be more knowledgeable about.

 

 

Yet for the uninitiated, most are surprised to know the degree to which the UN and the MUN Community have very rarely engaged one another. The United Nations and Model United Nations inhabit two different ecosystems. UN officials who run UN programs are specialists, technocrats in the best sense of the word. And educators and others who run MUN programs, whether those are big conferences or small MUN clubs, usually have a different set of goals and objectives. Often these do not overlap.  With no central organization setting rules and procedures, no one sanctioned method for choosing debate topics and finding resources to support delegate training and research, the MUN community begins to resemble a collection of nation states, each MUN program with its own rules and procedures, a favored approach to engaging with their followers, and at times fierce brand loyalty to their conference. And by and large, most have preferred it that way. Not surprisingly, in this environment Model UN programs hav had few, if any, opportunities to come together and discuss larger issues within their global community. Model United Nations has never been able to speak with one voice, because the conversation has been about differences and what sets us apart.

The E4J MUN workshop provided an opportunity to change that. Parking our differences at the door, the participants discussed ways that we could support one another. We needed to get to know one another, to understand the diversity and goals of the MUN community, and to realize that field offices had expertise to share but very real constraints in its time and resources. The UN learned that a good many Model UN practitioners want to support the UN and its work, and MUN practitioners learned that UN agencies and programs welcomed support in engaging a wide swath of civil society stakeholders. And in that sweet spot of convergence, an entirely new conversation emerged.

MUN Impact had a special role in this converging dialogue, because in reframing a much richer and wider conversation, we were able to address an important underlying tension within the MUN community. For all the personal impact that delegates experience through their MUN experience, that experience often ends when the gavel comes down at the closing ceremony. But many educators and conference organizers, and delegates themselves, often wish for more…more action, more relevance to their community, and a sense of service to support what they have learned through MUN. MUN Impact was able to share some ideas and resources and most importantly, stories of what action plus MUN, in the service of the real UN, might look like. To bring the stories of real MUN delegates doing real work to advance the UN’s agenda was validating, powerful and eye opening. It was a glimpse into what was possible, and hopefully cemented action and service via Model UN squarely into the center of this emerging global discussion.

We DID make history in Vienna, and in a small  but important way started a new conversation between the United Nations and Model UN community, long overdue, exciting, and filled with potential. Thank you to the E4J team for bringing us together and starting this valuable conversation. The fruits of this collaboration are beginning to show signs of taking hold. The 2018-19 MUN season is sure to be an exciting one.

    

 

HELA supports UNODC Mandates with biggest conference to date

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In August, Hope for Education and Leadership in Afghanistan (HELA) hosted their largest MUN conference to date. Over 400 delegates participated in a two day conference, focusing primarily on UNODC mandate topics. We caught up with Sulaiman Sulaimankhil, Co-Founder of HELA, to get an update on the conference.

(HELA was founded by MUN delegates, who created the first NGO in Afghanistan devoted entirely to promote Model UN in the country).

Why did you want to do UNODC mandate topics? 

Following the start of the valuable program of E4J MUN, we at HELA organization consider ourselves to be one of the only implementing partners of UNODC in the project of E4J. Therefore, we believe we should carry the responsibility of spreading the program in Afghanistan on our shoulders, through increasing awareness about the mandate topics of UNODC. But most importantly we believe these issues are really crucial and need to be discussed and debated by Afghan youth; our country suffers a lot due to existing challenges, many of which are covered by the mandate areas

What is HELA's goal as far as supporting UNODC?

HELA is transforming itself into a big national organization that will operate in all the provinces of Afghanistan, and through this transformation, we aim to continue supporting UNODC with spreading awareness about their mandate topics and about UNODC  itself. In the upcoming years we will be able to provide Model UN opportunities to most of the provinces in Afghanistan. It is our goal to continue selecting UNODC mandate topics for our upcoming conferences because HELA strongly believes in the importance of promoting the culture of lawfulness in Afghanistan.

Did you use the E4J MUN guide in any way? If so, what parts and why was it helpful? 

After returning back to Afghanistan from the E4J workshop in Vienna, we started training our team using the E4J MUN guide. It was helpful because it clearly describes the right way of doing Model UN, using the mandated topics, and forming committees in our conferences. There were links for supporting materials and documents. It's a very valuable resource for us.

  

 

What topics did you debate? 

So far we have debated the following topics in our conferences:

  • The question of Human Trafficking and addressing migrant smuggling across the Mediterranean.
  • Effective measures to protect the rights of smuggled migrants.
  • Reforming the criminal justice system and developing alternatives to imprisonment.
  • Improving access to education during times of conflict.

Did you try to contact the UNODC office and get them to send a speaker? 

We contacted the UNODC office to ask them to send a speaker to the conferences but despite several efforts, we did not manage to get their speaker to come to our conference. We definitely would love to have their support in future events!

What major things do you think the delegates learned about UNODC mandates? 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Since we mostly focused on the topics related to migrants, that is the number one thing they discussed and debated and they learned important things about their protection, rights and etc. But also, delegates learned new things such as crime prevention and alternatives to imprisonment and the rights of prisoners.

Do you have plans to debate UNODC mandates in the future? 

As mentioned in the beginning, we are planning to widen our activities throughout the country and we also bear in mind the idea of promoting the UNODC mandates, so yes we will have several conferences on the mentioned topics.

 

SDG1: Helping to End Poverty by Colegio Ayalde

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By the Colegio Ayalde MUN Club

Colegio Ayalde is located near Bilbao in the Basque Country, Spain. The students have been participating in MUN conferences since 2014 and organised their first  conference, MUN Bilbao, in January 2017. The MUN activity here at Ayalde has grown from an original five students to over seventy participating now.

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It all started about two months ago, when our teacher talked to us about the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). She challenged us to come up with a cooperative way to help on the achievement of these targets.

Extremely good projects were raised from the brainstorming we made the next day. After meticulously evaluating the pros and cons of each idea, we all agreed that a school-wide collection of different products would be the most effective idea. This collection would undoubtedly be a helpful method to help achieving the 1st Goal, “End Poverty”.

The UN has published different ways in which this target could be reached. Most of them had to do with policies and politics, but some others - such as distributing products among people in need - was manageable for us, an enthusiastic group of teenagers.

No sooner said than done, we got to the job in hand and started giving speeches about the project around the school. In order to make our presentations understandable for all, we had to adapt them to the students’ age. We divided into pairs and explained to the whole school what the SDGs were and how we were going to help the UN. We were glad to see that all the students were enthusiastic about it!

The idea was to assign each grade with a different product. The smallest ones, for example, had to bring all types of books or toys. Girls aged 9 to 12 were asked to collects clothes, while the oldest students brought in school material. In the end, we got to fill 5 vans, and took the goods to Cáritas (a Spanish organization who distributes these among needy families).

All in all, this project has made us feel useful and even necessary for the achievement of the Goals. We also learnt a lot about managing big projects, which is an undeniably essential life-skill. We’re very thankful to our teachers and the other students, who gave their all to make the most of our project. We are all now eager to launch a brand new campaign for the SDGs!

 

 

 

 

Distant elites, the Goals, and the future of MUN

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By Lisa Martin

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In March, I found my way to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. I came on a mission-to find an emerging MUN Club to collaborate with and bring to THIMUN Qatar 2019. Lebawi Academy's new MUN program had huge aspirations, and I wanted to meet the MUN Director and their students. The Lebawi Academy MUN Club did not disappoint, and I was treated to a spectacular day, meeting some incredible students, teachers and school administrators. By the time I left I knew I had located the perfect school with which to collaborate, and I will leave it to the Lebawi and Qatar Academy Doha students to share their stories as their emerging collaboration develops.

I spent the morning visiting different clubs at the school: meeting with the student government, the girl's empowerment club, the girls who code.  The morning was filled with incredibly engaged students sharing their projects and stories, and by lunch I was already overwhelmed by the positive energy. It was a day of many superlatives, from the excellent tour of the school to the amazing lunch, and a visit to the school's small special needs classroom, but there was one interaction with students left a profound impact on me, and has informed some of my thinking on MUN Impact moving forward.

Gathered in a small classroom, I listened to this articulate group of young women explain project after project they were working on. From maternal health and FGM to access to higher education and technology innovation projects they were working on. I began to see a pattern...each of the projects they were describing were related to an SDG, and in almost all cases, a specific target. I finally stopped the conversation and said  "Do you REALIZE that what you are doing, all of these programs, are supporting the SDGs?" And after some silence I asked "How many of you know what the SDGs are?" A few tentative hands were raised, but generally speaking, this was a term that had little currency with the group.

I went on to explain that quite unknowingly, they were part of a huge global movement, an international commitment by the United Nations to address multiple complex issues that underpin sustainable development. Did they know they were part of something that was actually a massive global undertaking? They had not, they told me, but a current of energy pulsed through that room in what teachers know to be those exquisite, teachable moments. And when I asked if they wanted to be connected to this larger movement, and to act as role models within it, the answer was 'Of course'.

In my final meeting that day with the school leadership, I shared my observation on this unintentional SDG alignment. I commended them on the service ethic that seemed to be a part of every aspect of the school and suggested that there might be real value in taking a closer look at their programs and searching for further SDG alignment. But it was the Assistant Dean of the School who put this SDG discussion into context. He said the the average person in Ethiopia saw the SDGs and something designed by distant elites, something that had little relevance to the average person. And yet, ironically, the entire school, with its service ethic, was deeply committed to those very goals and was working to solve them every single day!

It led me to ask myself a number of questions. How many young people were engaged in supporting the Goals without knowing it? How many school programs could be linked/aligned directly to the SDGs by simply evaluating their programs? Is simply knowing that your work supports the Goals of value in and of itself and is there synergy that comes from identifying your initiatives as part of a larger movement? How could this enormous chasm between local action and goals formulated by 'distant elites' be bridged? Was there a role for young people to play in narrowing this gap,  making the Goals accessible in some kind of meaningful way to local communities? Could students mentoring students be part of this solution? Could MUN be a vehicle for delivering SDG awareness and a space for young people to engage in UN mandates (content), their communities (through action) and by collaborating with one another to bring the change needed to make the Goals attainable?

I think Model UN has an enormous role to play in bridging this chasm. This high school aged demographic, eager to work to support the Goals and larger mandates of the United Nations, seems to be both underutilized and only minimally engaged by the UN itself. When the different rules of procedure and the false dichotomy of what makes MUN, well 'proper MUN' is removed,  and the competitiveness gets stripped away from conferences, something very different emerges.  This is what MUN Impact has discovered: a groundswell of enthusiasm for 'doing something' with the knowledge gained through MUN participation. If we can purposefully connect MUN delegates around the world to ask these bigger questions about successfully attaining the Goals, and to facilitate opportunities to work together, something powerful will emerge.

The future of MUN will be found in places like Lebawi Academy. With the help of MUN Impact, this club and others like it can pivot together into something more powerful than just debate. This is a global community ready to lean in and support the UN through action. Now is the time to take words off a resolution and apply them to the challenges we face. I think our delegates are ready for this challenge.

    

 

 

 

Taipei American School Girl Up Leadership Summit II

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By Janice Yang, Annabel Uhlman, Vivian Wang, Niralee Shah

MUN Impact Press Writer: Si Yun Ee

 

On April 7, 2018, the Girl Up Club in Taipei American School (TAS) hosted our second annual Leadership Summit.  Our high school club is registered as a chapter of Girl Up which operates under the umbrella of the United Nations Foundation.  As we reflected on the intent of the club’s founding and began our work in hosting a summit that would attract over 100 participants, we realized the significance of our journey and how closely it aligns with MUN-Impact’s process of Inspire, Dive In, and Impact.

Our chapter’s founding two years ago was inspired by the recognition of a lack of discussion and awareness of gender issues within our community.  The Girl Up organization itself closely aligns its mission with Sustainable Development Goals number 4 and 5: Inclusive and Quality Education for All, and Gender Equality and Empowerment of All Women and Girls. Girl Up’s five pillars of action to cultivate areas such as girls’ leadership, education, and health were all missions that inspired us.  We were energized to be part of a change.

The “Dive In” component of our initiative involved converting all our dreams into reality, which often required all things related to logistics more than anything else; learning about the paperwork necessary to start a club, defining and then executing a club leadership structure, and learning how to connect with the larger UN Foundation Girl Up network. Of course, there were also many other smaller yet even more important things, like getting members to show up for meetings, or deciding what content (of the infinite possibilities) we wanted to talk about at each meeting.   All the logistical steps that would eventually lead to the impact stage also included discovering and attending the Girl Up Leadership Summit in Washington D.C.. At this Summit  we were in contact with former U.S. Treasury Secretary Rosie Rios and model Ashley Graham. We also got the opportunity to lobby with U.S. Congresspeople to pass legislation related to girls’ education. The Summit in D.C. further inspired to take what we learned and to maximize such a valuable experience to make an Impact within our own school community.

 

The following year we simulated the experience of the Leadership Summit in D.C., bringing it to a broader audience of youths and peers at TAS. Our summit was targeted for those who did not have the opportunity to attend the Girl Up Leadership Summit in Washington D.C., to encourage discussion and advocacy of gender issues, and to promote the notion to many on campus that pursuing gender equality should not be discouraged.

While the summit held at TAS was modelled after the summit in D.C., the event catered to the key issues commonly experienced by our school community and its audience of mostly youths. The overall theme pertained most relevantly to SDG 5 of Gender Equality and Empowerment. Specific workshops, many of which were interactive or discussion-based, explored more nuanced aspects of the topics, ranging from Self Defense to Matrilineage to Women’s Leadership and Amplification.

Through the two years of our running this summit, our participation numbers jumped from 60 to over 100, including both student and faculty workshop presenters and event attendees. Most recently, we were also able to invite speakers such as the Ambassador of Belize, as well as women leaders of law and technology firms Paragon Legal and Intel to talk about how gender issues are tackled on both the global and the personal level.

 

Although MUN Impact had not been established when we started this journey, reflection as we prepare their next journey to college reveals how closely the process of impacting our surrounding community through issues we are passionate about aligned with the goals of MUN Impact. This whole project has taught us that yes, it is indeed possible to create something from nothing, and reach hundreds of people with our passions through the process. From a small community here at TAS, we can find the same goals and passion to implement impact, parallel to the reason for encouraging youth to take action - exactly why MUN Impact was established.

 

A MAD Idea in support of SDG4

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By Shane Hynes, Student, St Andrews, Dublin

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Every year the THIMUN Qatar Peace and Service Award’ is given to a student deemed to have done outstanding humanitarian work in their community. MUN Directors attending the conference are asked to nominate one of their students for the award, and then the best student/delegate is unanimously chosen. It is presented at the closing ceremony of THIMUN Qatar. This year, 17-year-old Shreyas Rajesh, from the American Embassy School in New Delhi, received the award for the incredible work he has done in his school, but also in his country.

In his own words ‘The THIMUN Peace and Service Award is a recognition of community service work that students – and delegates – do to advance the goals of the United Nations. It recognizes that young people are capable of implementing change in a meaningful way, and I am incredibly grateful to be this year’s recipient.’

Shreyas initially got involved in community service with the schools MAD (Make a Difference) programme because he ‘felt a responsibility to give back’. He has spent the last three years doing volunteer work with the MAD Program teaching English and Social Studies concepts to slum children from a camp adjacent to AES. Many of these students have gone on to attend university. He has also written his own sophisticated curriculum to deliver the above education with such professionalism that it is going to be presented at the World Teaching Conference in Atlanta, Georgia under the title “Empowerment Can Create Genius” As well as that, he has volunteered with many NGOs such as Chirag, Mission Smile, Indian Head Injury Foundation. Interned with The Public Health Foundation of India for 6 weeks and is a Board Member of the Make-A-Difference Organization in AES. Described as a ‘humble, articulate, competent and socially aware student’ by his MUN Director Robert Givitch, Shreyas is a beacon of inspiration to all of those around him.

Shreyas was Deputy Chair of the First Human Rights Commission at THIMUN Qatar this year. He had no idea that he had been nominated for the prestigious award by his MUN Director, and was shocked to hear when Johann Bambino, Deputy Secretary General at THIMUN Qatar, mentioned the MAD Club in his speech before naming the 5th recipient of the Award.

‘I was very much in shock; going up I remember almost tripping on the stairs. I was just so excited and thrilled, but with all those people clapping and really bright lights, I was mostly just surprised and shocked. I had no idea I was going to win; it really took until the flight back home for it to kind of settle in.’

When asked about why he does Model United Nations, he said he ‘originally joined MUN for the same reasons that many middle schoolers do – to wear a fancy suit and travel to a new place. What made me really stay with the activity were the people I met and debates in which I participated.’ For him, MUN is all about ‘helping people become better public speakers, learning to recognize and accept different perspectives, and to work cooperatively while still ensuring their priorities as representatives of global countries are met.’

Out of all of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals, Shreyas thinks Goal Number One is the most important; ‘No Poverty’.  He believes a world without poverty is a world where everyone is entitled to their basic rights and can live comfortably. Shreyas also thinks Goal Number Three is crucial, Good Health and Wellbeing. Most of his work with the MAD Club is in this sphere and that it is one of the SDG’s that we all can help accomplish.

 

Shreyas has made a huge impact on the lives of the many impoverished children that he has taught, worked with and secured a future for. He hopes to become a doctor, and to continue the amazing work he has been doing. He is truly MAD (Making a Difference), and an SDG 4 champion!

 

EDEN Hope in Motion and the SDG Inventory in action

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By Albert Oliva, MUN Impact Press Writer and SDG Innovator

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The SDG Inventory is a newly established tool from MUN Impact which aims to raise awareness of the Sustainable Development Goals. You might wonder that everybody in our modern and industrialized world is fully aware of the 2030 agenda and that when setting and establishing a school club occurs it is always with a vision to tackle one of the goals, nevertheless, opposite is the truth as we can hear from MUN Impact director Lisa Martin.

“This past week I had the opportunity to visit a Leadership Academy in Addis Ababa. I met with several club leaders as they shared their activities and community outreach. Each and every one of them were engaged in actions to support the SDGs, in most cases some very specific Targets. These students were only vaguely aware of the SDGs. The Dean of their school told me later that the most prevalent view of the SDGs is that they were something designed by elites and had little direct relevance to common people.“

In order to raise awareness of the goals, and change the attitude of many about them, students around the world were encouraged to use this SDG inventory tool to map one club at their school and track their SDG progress and raise awareness of the Sustainable Development Goals which are being tackled by this club.

After thinking for a while I have chosen to be for the past two weeks in contact with a MIT Launch initiative led by Novy Porg students called EDEN Hope in Motion. Five brave students took the chance and risk of establishing a new organization in a very short time and promoting it on an international level during the last year and during the last week MIT session which was held in Brussels. EDEN Hope in Motion is aiming through its activities and online app which can be accessed on Android and hopefully very soon on apple, to spread awareness of urgent social and environmental issues and to connect the society with charities and NGOs, all around the world. It’s most recent aim is to organize events and trips which will support jeopardized communities all around the world.

Even though, all 5 students which established and launched this project are aware of what Sustainable development Goals are, they did. Ot really realize to what extent they tackle some of them. Throughout observing their actions and talking with the organizers of EDEN Launch, I can conclude that most three fundamental SDGs tackled by this organization are 12th- Responsible consumption and production, 13th- Climate Actions and to some point of an extent 1st- No Poverty.

And what about future of this organization? We have asked Kristina Savchenko, one of the 5 key figures, which made this idea come true.

In the future, our aim is to make EDEN, more international and establish international routes and trips through which our app will help millions of in need. Currently we are thinking only about conducting trips to Indonesia, however slowly but surely we would like to visit and make beneficial trips to all continents of this world.”

Even though this organization is new and was established just couple of months ago, it has made a tremendous progress and supported solutions to before mentioned Sustainable Development Goals. There should be a greater demand for such organizations and I strongly believe that slowly but surely students will initiate and realize more of their ideas and desires.

Student-initiated IMPACT Summit announced for Prague

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By Albert Oliva, Impact Summit Organizer

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When I first heard the question, with whom and where did I get inspired to start organizing Impact Summit with Salam Centre for Peace, I answered in Doha, Qatar when I attended an official MUN Impact meeting where all leaders gathered to discuss their future goals. Even though I did not say a single word and I must admit I was a bit scared to say something, as I was sitting with such an amazing and high achieving people at one table, it totally changed my flow of thoughts.

Why can’t I be a leader like them, and do a real Impact in this world?, Was the first question that popped in my head, and actually you know what, students can make real Impact and their voices can be valued on the same basis as those who are currently working in UN. This is exactly why I appreciate and admire organizations such as Salam Centre for Peace and MUN Impact, as they truly give out the confidence and MUN Identity through their activities. Couple of years ago, I could not even speak out loud at my school, as I was afraid someone is gonna judge me based on what I say, but it was time to change that, and actually we need to change this in our world, as without students we cannot build our future.

 

 

Impact Summit with the cooperation of MUN Impact wants to make a platform for students to truly uncover their potential. This Summit is going to be special because it’s structure is rather extraordinary. Our aim is not to create a MUN conference where during the opening ceremony half of the students will be asleep and during the sessions, majority of students will not be involved. We want to make radical changes and therefore we have introduced a whole new structure of debate. We want students to feel that their voices are on an equal bases as those in real UN. Without change and without implementation of new rules we can never achieve a significant Impact on our society. A single thought can change everything as Lisa Martin, director of MUN Impact supports with her statement how Impact Summit started

MUN Impact grew out of the Qatar Leadership Conference. I planned an MUN Thought Leaders Summit and had hoped to host a discussion on best practices within the MUN community. But in the lead up to that event, a number of great conversations took place that really focused people's attention on the SDGs and how the Model UN community could support that. By the end of our Thought Leaders Summit, we had a name, a domain purchased and a twitter account.”

Impact can be created quickly, and with a good team and support you can really change the world. Since it began MUN Impact has helped students to organize their own MUN conferences and has raised awareness of student Impact all around the world. And where does Lisa Martin see the real Impact and future development?

“I think we would like to find ways to develop MUN programs that focus on activism and support of the SDGs, host our own MUN Impact Leadership Conferences, and to find substantive ways to engage with the United Nations. MUN Delegates are a very rich source of support and activism, and the UN should be taking greater advantage of this engaged community”

Impact Summit and MUN Impact both will help students to realize that everybody can lead this world and become a true leader. The Summit is expected to have delegates from all over the world, and is special in a way that there are no barriers of entry. We are open to high school, university students however also professionals in SDG fields such as representatives from foundations and NGOs. Without MUN Impact this Summit would not take place, and I believe that this partnership will be the key and fundamental pillar of the entire event. Throughout the Summit delegates will receive press releases which will be composed of stories from MUN Impact blog as everybody has to know what we students have truly achieved.

There might be borders in the world, but there are not borders between us, and let’s connect the world together. We hope to see everybody in Prague and we are looking forward for all delegates in September to help us shape Leaders of Tomorrow

 

 

Fund a Child -MUN Impact in Dar-Es Salam

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By Joon Alibhai, MUN Delegate from the International School of Tanganyika

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Our passport to understanding the complex world that we are part of - education - may be readily available for some. However, for others, it is a dream that almost never comes true. Due to the lack of opportunities for education, trying to navigate through this slippery world is a grueling, perplexing, and simply tragic reality for many. A basic human right is being denied to millions of children around the world, and despite the recent efforts for gender equality, over half of the children not in school are girls. According to UNESCO, over 31 million girls are not attending school, and the impact this has on their futures is extremely unfortunate.

Fortunately, educational pursuits such as Model United Nations (MUN) have successfully been able to foster youth leadership. Worldwide, devoted MUNers are establishing life-changing projects for the betterment of the world. One example of this can be found in the International School of Tanganyika, in Tanzania. Fund A Child (FAC) is an initiative started by a few students through the International Baccalaureate (IB) Creativity, Action, and Service (CAS) program with the aim of fully sponsoring education for  underprivileged girls in the local area of Dar-Es-Salaam.

Head of Marketing for FAC, Vijay Krishnan explained that, “the self-sustaining service activity that works hand in hand with a local beneficiary, CHIPUA, has managed to donate money for the completion of secondary education of 7 girls (including textbooks, any needed stationary, tables and chairs) through sponsors and fundraisers.” Project president Veer Visaria said that “MUN has given me insight on pressing global issues, and taught me how to diplomatically lead a group of inspired young delegates.” This year the service group has raised $4000 from two fundraising activities, and now sponsor an additional six girls for education.

This #MUNIMPACT story demonstrates how much of a butterfly effect MUN really has outside of the conference’s annual bubble. Students like Visaria are continuously channeling their passion to create a better world, and THIMUN is helping them find their voice.