Justine Wu has been actively supporting Thirst Project and has helped raise awareness and funds to support their work and SDG6. She attends Gretchen Whitney High School and has been doing MUN for a total of five years now (since 8th grade).
What came first: Thirst Project or MUN?
MUN actually came first. I began with this program in 8th grade and decided to continue in high school. I soon learned about and decided to work with the Thirst Project, starting in 10th grade.
What is the connection between your work with Thirst Project and MUN? IS there a connection?
Generally, MUN is full of discussion of numerous topics. One of the most urgent and biggest crises in our international community is the global water crisis, and is a topic I have often discussed in committee. Seeing the real-world impact that Thirst Project had on the water crisis, I knew I wanted to take part in this organization and that it would be important to educate my fellow peers, especially MUN students. I invited them to the annual MUN Conference that Gretchen Whitney High School holds and all the gram money that we earned that day were donated towards Thirst Project. After conversing about the many problems that our world faced, Thirst Project immediately came to mind as an organization that could help remedy the problems. Because of their core message, devotion to helping the environment, and many other reasons, I have chosen to further my involvement with the Thirst Project.
4What have you accomplished on behalf of Thirst Project?
My greatest accomplishment on behalf of the Thirst Project is introducing it to my community to educate and inspire people to put a cap on the global water crisis. I began by inviting Thirst Project to speak at our school to our students where we did the Miracle Minute challenge. Within that one minute, our students helped raise over $180 to donate to building a well in a community who has little access to clean water. Because of this one presentation, it sparked the interest of students throughout the campus, and before I knew it, it became one of Key Club’s main focus for their term, Shanti Club’s (Indian Cultural Club) main charity of donation, and most of all, our MUN’s ideal and favorite organization to partner with.
What are your thoughts on making MUN more service/action oriented?
Most of what we discuss in MUN stays within that one committee room as just a ‘great idea.’ Though these ideas might be truly life-changing, students often don’t have the resources or the chance to put their ‘great ideas’ into action. That is why I am so glad that MUN Impact is providing young individuals the platform to share their work and truly be able to advance our international community, one change at a time. I am eager to see all the ‘great ideas’ that our generation and even future generations will transform into reality. Guiding MUN to be more service/action oriented will be beneficial in opening up the eyes of our community to become aware of occurrences that might be happening below the surface. This newfound awareness can be channeled into creating more effective and positive solutions to crises in the long run.
Tell us about going to the UN to share your Thirst Project work. What are you most excited about?
Our communities are faced with numerous global challenges and a specifically big one is the water crisis which I have learned has affected more than just a handful of people. I hope to educate our growing community and learn to devise solutions that will prove to be effective in addressing issues, worldwide. No words can express how honored I feel to be able to go and stand in front of many students and challenge them to stand beside me as we change the world for the better. And I truly cannot wait to inspire people just as the Thirst Project had first inspired me.
Any last thoughts on the UN, MUN, SDG 6?
Being in Model United Nations for five years has exposed me to world affairs and global crises, nurturing my growing curiosity for foreign affairs and love for a diverse culture. This has urged me to further my understanding of global development and its effect on the international community. If it wasn’t for joining MUN, I would have continued to be sheltered from the events that happened outside of my own community. But with my expanding knowledge, I want to take action and make change.