Category Archives: Our Programs

Read more from participants of our programs, including Model UN, the Women’s Forum, the Global Issues Series, Young Professionals, and our Signature Events!

Inspiring Change through Education: Women’s Forum @ UNA-GB celebrates International Women’s Day early with a screening of Graceland Girls!

This past Monday, March 3, UNA-GB members and friends learned about the power of education through a film screening of Graceland Girls and panel discussion with global education activists and experts! Following a lively reception and the screening, the Women’s Forum hosted panelists Jordan Salvatoriello, director of Graceland Girls; Monte Allen, Senior Director of CARE; and Richard Rowe, Chairman and CEO of Open Learning Exchange (OLE). Some of the questions posed by Women’s Forum members and the audience centered around Ms. Salvatoriello’s experience in Kenya while filming the documentary, ways in which organizations like CARE and OLE are partnering with local communities in the developing world to provide education, and how members of the greater-Boston community can become global education advocates.

Graceland Girls tells the story of high school students at the Graceland Girls School in central Kenya, an educational environment available to girls who were “fortunate and bright enough to receive sponsorship.” Many of the girls come from remote areas in Kenya, where their parents struggle to provide for themselves and their families. At various points in the film, the girls express the responsibility and pressure they feel to succeed in school and their future lives so that they can support their families. “Seen as their last chance for a better fate than that of their parents,” the girls’ stories reflect an awareness about the importance of their hard work. When asked what they want to pursue after going to university, many of the girls confidently list occupations such as “lawyer” and “neurosurgeon.” Faced with difficult circumstances and seemingly unsurpassable obstacles, the Graceland girls exhibit undying determination and hope, knowing that they “could create a ripple effect so powerful, it could end the cycle of poverty there.” (Learn more about the film here).

But what about girls (and boys) who are not lucky enough to go to the Graceland school? Monte Allen from CARE and Richard Rowe from OLE are involved in the struggle to address this need.

Carelogo

Mr. Allen shared in the panel discussion that one of CARE’s main goals is to empower communities to help themselves, a strategy that hopes to enable long-term and sustainable solutions. By providing resources and training to communities that want their guidance, CARE strives not only to reach young generations of under-served girls and boys, but also their elders – who become their teachers, mentors, and partners in education. You can read more about CARE’s work in girls’ education in Afghanistan, where they support over 300 schools!

OLE Logo

Richard Rowe’s comments added to the theme of sustainability by presenting OLE’s philosophy on the necessity of activity-based learning and educational content that is available through Open Education Resources (OERs). This aspect of OLE’s work puts it at the forefront of initiatives that seek to provide affordable and sustainable education solutions to the developing world. You can read more about OLE’s work here.

Jordan Salvatoriello further elaborated on her experience in Kenya while making the film, noting that she wanted the girls to feel comfortable sharing their stories in full, and that she didn’t want her own experience or bias to take over their narratives. She also shared that the project was an incredible learning experience: she learned as much from the students as they learned from her. Parts of the film portray small workshops and field trips centered on photography and filming skills that Jordan led the girls in. These activities involved the girls reflections on their work, illuminating how they see the world, relate to one another and perceive themselves. Ms. Salvatoriello emphasized that there are many ways her film can be used to create change, encouraging a young audience member to share and discuss it with her local school group. If you, too, are inspired by Jordan’s work, find out how you can become involved! Also, watch the entire panel discussion here!!

Finally, we rounded off our evening with an incredible a capella performance by Women of the World!

Now that you know how we celebrated International Women’s Day this year (even if it was 5 days early!), we invite you to share your stories! What IWD events are you going to? How will you celebrate the achievements of the world’s women and girls?

A special thank-you to our co-sponsors for this special event: African Community Health Initiatives, Boston Glow, Boston Network for International Development, Care, Center for Women’s Health & Human Rights at Suffolk University, Girl Up, Tufts University School of Medicine: Public Health Programs and Center for Global Public Health, Open Learning Exchange, Our Bodies Ourselves, Women and Health Initiative at Harvard University, and Women of the World

A Brief History of the Mighty Sushi Roll

Hello readers!

We hope that you all are excited for the Young Professionals cultural event TONIGHT, Sushi Rolling Night with Young Professionals! Have a look at the interesting facts about the history of sushi to prepare you for the amazing cultural event that is in store for you this week!

Image

The first meaning of the Chinese symbol for sushi is believed to be “those made with fish”, then became “food where fish is pickled by rice and salt”. This cuisine bares little resemblance to the Japanese sushi we enjoy now!

With sushi readily available to most cultures around the world due to globalization, it has rapidly become a popular dish around the globe and even a symbol of Japanese culture. However, the sushi that most cultures experience today is not exactly how it was introduced to Japan during it’s inception. There are many forms of sushi that exist. The very first form of sushi introduced in Japan was called Narezushi. During the process of creating the Narezushi form of sushi, raw fish were stuffed with rice and then placed through a fermentation process. The fermentation process would take a couple of months until it was almost complete. Before the process of fermentation was complete, the fish stuffed with rice were prepared for people to eat in order to save the rice from dissolving. It wasn’t until the 19th century that Japanese sushi was transformed into more of a commonly produced food.

During the 19th century, as commoners began to receive permission to create businesses of their own, sushi transformed into a new form called edomaezushi, and became a type of fast food in Japan. Raw pieces of fish were placed on top of rolled squares of rice infused with vinegar. During this time, merchants were forced to become creative in the preservation of the fish used for sushi as raw fish spoils quickly. Depending on the type of fish they were using, merchants would cover their product in salt, wasabi, vinegar, or soy sauce. This allowed merchants to keep their product for a longer, although still limited, amount of time. Edomaezushi is now popular all throughout the world and sometimes changes shape to compliment other cultures. In the United States some types of Edomaezushi come with an assortment of sauces that you wouldn’t typically see in Japan.

Image

The earliest written mention of sushi, according to OED, was in the 1893 book “Japanese Interiors”

Sushi has made a drastic change in America. A prime example of this change can be seen with the extremely popular California roll. There is a legend that says Japanese sushi chef Ichiro Mashita is actually the chef that created the California roll. Upon opening one of the very first restaurants that featured a sushi bar in Los Angeles, Mashita wanted to find a substitute for Toro (fatty tuna) in his cuisine. He realized that avocado holds the same greasy texture of Toro and decided to use it as a substitute. He also turned the roll inside out in order to appease his American customers who did not like seeing the Nori (dried seaweed) when eating their sushi, which is how you would typically order sushi in the U.S. today. The type of sushi that Mashita crafted is actually called Makizushi, which is translated as “rolled sushi”. Makizushi and Edozushi are some of the most popular ways that sushi is experienced within the United States!

Now that you have some background into the history of sushi and the different ways it can be experienced we hope that you will join us and your fellow YP’s at Sushi Rolling Night!!

Top 5 Reasons Why You Should Attend UN Day Luncheon 2013!

It’s officially fall (and pretty chilly in Boston)…which means it’s once again time to celebrate United Nations Day with UNA-GB! The office honored UN Day last week on October 24th by raising the UN flag above Boston City Hall, did anyone spot it?

UN Day, which has been celebrated every year since 1948, recognizes the creation of the United Nations and its founding principles of peace, cooperation, and collective action. This year, Secretary General Ban Ki-moon echoed these founding ideals in his address: “we continue to show what collective action can do. We can do even more. In a world that is more connected, we must be more united. On United Nations Day, let us pledge to live up to our founding ideals and work together for peace, development, and human rights.”

In a more formal celebration of UN Day, UNA-GB is hosting its annual UN Day Luncheon on Tuesday, November 5th (next week!) from 12:30 to 2 pm at the Boston Park Plaza Hotel. Why should you honor us with your attendance? Here are a few reasons we can think of!

1) Ambassador Nicholas Burns will be there.

Ambassador Burns

Not only will he be there – he’ll be delivering the keynote speech on “America’s Global Challenges 2014.” Ambassador Burns served in the US Foreign Service for twenty-seven years, during which time he was appointed Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, Ambassador to NATO, Ambassador to Greece, and State Department Spokesman.

He worked on the National Security Council staff as Senior Director for Russia, Ukraine, and Eurasia Affairs and was Special Assistant to President Clinton and Director for Soviet Affairs for President George H.W.Bush. He is currently Professor of the Practice of International Relations  at the Harvard Kennedy School of Government, Director of the Future of Diplomacy Project and Faculty Chair for the Programs on the Middle East and on India and South Asia, as well as Director of the Future of Diplomacy Project. Burns is also the Director of the Aspen Strategy Group, Senior Counselor at the Cohen Group, and serves on the Board of Directors of Entegris, Inc.

You may have read some of his work in The Boston Globe, where he writes a bi-weekly column on foreign affairs.

2) Special guests, Georg Kell and Jonas Haertle will also be there.

                                                    

Mr. Kell and Mr. Haertle are this year’s Global Corporate Citizenship Honor Roll guests! The honor roll recognizes Massachusetts-based companies who have signed on to key business principles through the UN Global Compact.

Georg Kell is the Executive Director of the UN Global Compact, the world’s largest voluntary corporate sustainability initiative with 8,000 corporate participants in 145 countries. A key architect of the Global Compact, he has led the initiative since its founding in 2000, establishing the most widely recognized multi-stakeholder network and action platform to advance responsible business practices. Mr. Kell joined the United Nations in 1987, and has been at the leading edge of the organization’s private-sector engagement ever since.

Jonas Haertle is Head of the Principles for Responsible Management Education (PRME) secretariat of the  United Nations Global Compact Office. The mission of the PRME initiative is to inspire and champion responsible management education, research and thought leadership globally. In his role as coordinator for Global Compact Local Networks he works with the country networks in Latin America and the Caribbean. Mr. Haertle holds a master’s degree in European Studies of Hamburg University. As a Fulbright scholar, he also attained a MSc degree in Global Affairs from Rutgers University.

3) There will be opportunities to network with professionals, consuls, and other individuals who are dedicated to promoting the founding principles of the United Nations!

luncheonnetworking

Members of the UNA-GB, professionals of all ages, Consuls from a variety of Consulates in Boston, and most importantly, YOU will have the opportunity to discuss anything from national issues/achievements to the UN’s Millennium Development Goals, to the chilly Boston weather! This is a wonderful opportunity to connect with like-minded people who support the work of the United Nations.

4) It’s a good excuse to get out of the office (or school or the house) and enjoy some delicious food!

meal

Could there be a better incentive? The Boston Park Plaza Hotel will serve some delicious appetizers, entrees, and desserts! It is a chance to spend a few hours out of the office/school, enjoy great company, and have a tasty meal at a swanky hotel…what more could you ask for?

5) You will be supporting UNA-GB’s programs, which aim to educate today’s  youth and tomorrow’s leaders!

una-gb-260

Funds raised from ticket sales and sponsorships at the UN Day Luncheon directly support UNA-GB’s community events and classroom-based programs, which serve more than 5,000 participants annually in greater Boston.

Convinced? Then what are you waiting for?! Sign up to attend UN Day Luncheon 2013 today!

Written by: Eliza Berg, Programs Intern

UN Day of the Girl Child: “Innovating for Girls’ Education”

On Thursday, October 10th, Katrina Sousounis introduced Girl Rising to about two hundred and sixty attendees at a film screening hosted by UNA-GB. She explained that the most pervasive issues affecting the people of the world today (including poverty, malnutrition, illiteracy, violence) disproportionately affect young women. Katrina finished the speech with a call for educational reform to give opportunities to women everywhere, and ended with this quote from the film: “Boys need to believe in girls, and girls need to learn to believe in themselves.”

Katrina is 13 years old.

UNAGB Girl Rising Girl Up

Katrina and the Girl Up Club of the R.J. Grey Junior High School

Founder of the first Girl Up club in Massachusetts, Katrina was inspired to try and solve the problems so carefully outlined in her speech. Her club is part of an organization founded to help girls and young women around the world to reach their full potential by ensuring that they are educated, safe, well-fed, and guaranteed basic human rights.

Because of this, Katrina was asked to introduce Girl Rising at UNA-GB’s screening of the film on Thursday, which was a fundraiser for Girl Up. Her presence and hard work demonstrate a distinctive part of Girl Up’s message: to help girls reach their potential around the world, we must empower girls themselves to effect the change that they want to see.UNAGB Girl Rising Film Screening

Girl Rising is the story of nine girls from around the world: Sokha from Cambodia, Wadley from Haiti, Suma from Nepal, Yasmin from Egypt, Azmera from Ethiopia, Ruksana from India, Senna from Peru, Mariama from Sierra Leone, and Amina from Afghanistan. Each girl was paired with a writer from her country to help tell her story. Each story is artistically captured differently, with varying experiences when it comes to cultural restraints, parental support, and environmental circumstances. In essence, Girl Rising is a movement to deliver a “simple, critical truth: educate girls and you will change the world.”

The UNA-GB decided to screen this film to get a dialogue started to help men, women, boys and girls in Boston and elsewhere think about solutions to various forms of discrimination against girls around the world. After the film, a musical group called “Women of the World”, which sings in 21 different languages, performed. They chose a song that resonated with the idea that together, we can create positive change.

UNAGB Girl Rising Women of the World

Women of the World Perform at “Girl Rising” Screening

In 2011, the UN declared October 11th as the first annual tribute to its goal to improve gender equality everywhere. This year, the theme of the day is “Innovating for Girls’ Education.” It sounds simple enough, but the task of ensuring that girls worldwide are educated is complex, both in implementation and consequence.

What exactly is keeping girls from going to school?

A wide breadth of causes keep girls out of school each day. Governmental policies and social issues alike can keep girls and boys out of school. Here are a few major perpetrators:

  • School is not free everywhere, and many poor families cannot afford to send any or all of their children to school. In some countries, boys are sent to school while girls stay home and work.
  • It can be dangerous: in 2012, Save the Children reported that there were more than 3,600 attacks on education around the world.
  • About half of all girls living in the world’s least developed countries are married before the age of 18. Child marriage greatly decreases a girl’s likelihood of finishing school, according to World Vision.
  • Lack of sanitary protection means that girls may miss up to five days of school a month
  • When basic needs aren’t being met and students are not healthy or well-fed, school may be a low priority.
  • There may not be a school within walking distance, especially in rural areas.
  • Governmental policies and societal norms can make it illegal  or abnormal for girls to become educated

So, how exactly does educating girls help the world?

  • According to the UN: “When girls are able to stay in school and avoid being married early, they can build a foundation for a better life for themselves and their families and participate in the progress of their nations.”
  • Educated mothers educate their children; this not only breaks the cycle of poverty, but their sons will be more inclined to educate their daughters.
  • UNICEF connected discrimination against women and girls and hunger. Child malnutrition in South Asia is highly linked to women’s limited access to education and difficulties with finding paid employment.

What can you do?

  •  Education, education, education! Educate yourself by exploring the issue even more- try checking out some of the links below
  • Donate! Visit Girl Up’s website, or one of the other initiatives below, to give to the cause.
  • Become an activist! Join one of the causes below, or create your own!

Happy International Day of the Girl Child!

Sources/More Information:

School Girls Unite!
Girl Rising
 Girl Up

UN Day of the Girl Child
http://www.un.org/en/events/girlchild/index.shtml
http://dayofthegirl.org/actnow/
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/10/11/international-day-of-girl-child_n_4080681.html?utm_hp_ref=impact

The Search for Authentic Chinese Food

By Miriam Shahidi, Travel and Foreign Language Lover and Assistant UNA-GB Blogger

Ni Hao readers!

We hope you’re ready for the next UNA-GB Young Professionals cultural event, Taste of China! Read along to gain some insight into China’s unique cuisine and rev your appetites for our event, which is only mere days away!

I’m sure most of you have heard many things about Chinese food and its sometimes bizarre ingredients and offbeat recipes. The first thing we should know about our idea of Chinese food is that what we eat here in the US is very different from native Chinese food. In fact, American Chinese food is almost an entirely different genre by itself!

What you think when I say “Chinese food”

Globalization has always brought an integration of cultures, allowing people in one part of our shrinking world to experience some cultural aspect of another faraway country, and a perfect example is Chinese food in America. What we eat here varies vastly from what people eat in China. In America, a typical Chinese restaurant will serve dishes rich in oil and heavy sauce, and somewhat uniform in flavor. To an American, this seems like an exotic dining experience, but in fact, these dishes are missing a common characteristic of authentic Chinese cuisine- simplicity. Which leads us to ask, what actually is real Chinese Food? What role does it play in China besides basic sustenance?

Food is an extremely important part of Chinese culture. China, having the largest population in the world, stands in at about 1.35 BILLION people.  That explains its huge agricultural industry and extensive  diversity of cuisine. Historically, the idea has been for Chinese people that if you want a good meal you don’t have to spend a lot of money on it, no matter who you are or where you come from. What most Chinese recipes have in common are their inexpensive ingredients and great nutritional value.  Here are some common staple ingredients in Chinese cuisine:

  • Basic grains: rice and wheat, which are either eaten as is or processed into hundreds of different types of noodles and dumplings.
Image

Green tea is a common addition to any meal

  • Meat, tofu, or bean curd are used as the protein of the meal.
  • Vegetables: bok choy, or Chinese mustard, has the texture of lettuce and is cooked or steamed. Eggplant, cabbage, broccoli, bean sprouts, mushrooms, snow peas, radish, and bamboo shoots are also very common vegetables to steam or fry.
  • Flavor: soy sauce, chili paste or sauce, rice vinegar, plum sauce (also known as sweet and sour sauce). All are flavor enhancing and give each specialty its energizing kick!
  • Green tea, black tea, and white tea are the most common drinks with and between any meal. They are all rich in antioxidants and carry great medicinal value. No meal is complete without a small, hot cup of tea!
Image

Prepared chicken feet… yum!

Authentic Chinese food has many forms and recipes, depending on the region it comes from. A trip to China in 2007 along the Silk Trail showed me how much food really differs by region. Going from coastal China’s large cities like Beijing and Xi’an, to the Gobi desert in the West, food transforms from simple, predictable dishes like rice noodles with steamed vegetables, pork, beef, or chicken, garlic notes, and lots of soy sauce, to more exotic dishes the more West you go. In the West, dishes tend to be more exotic, and sometimes bizarre, especially through the eyes of a Westerner! Somewhere in the Gobi desert, people are eating pickled chicken feet with spicy yellow curry sauce and green peppers (which would rank 5 out of 5 peppers on those spicy guides on menus in American Chinese restaurants).  Chicken feet, which are  more delicious than they sound, are something you can find in Chinese grocery stores in America. Meanwhile, somewhere in America, people are eating Sweet and Sour Chicken with knives and forks, reading their zodiac sign from a menu.  Another bizarre specialty in Western China is pig’s snout and it is eaten with flavorful soy and sesame sauce- and despite what it looks like, it’s absolutely delicious!

Real Chinese food is uniquely delicious and not to be missed. The detail, care, and craftsmanship that go into a real Chinese meal is unlike like any other. Don’t be put off when you see something like pickled chicken feet or frog legs at an Asian market in America. This is just one part of China’s vast culinary diversity. When you have the chance to taste authentic Chinese food, or better yet, make it yourself,  it’s a meal you will never forget!

Are you hungry yet? We hope you are excited for A Taste of China and won’t miss the opportunity to try some real Chinese food with your fellow YP’s! Tickets are $20 and you should reserve your spot as soon as possible!

Taste of China
Wednesday, August 21 @ 6pm
Shojo Restaurant
Tickets on sale here!

All about Poland and Pierogi

Flagbig

Hey readers,

We’re sure you’re just as super excited for the Young Professionals ‘Taste of Poland’ event next week as we are here at the UNA-GB! In life, you may not be able to have your cake and eat it too, but here at the UNA-GB, you can make your all the pierogi you want and eat them until you’re completely satisfied! This blog post will be introduce you to the wonderful food form and throw in a few fun facts about Poland along the way.

What, exactly are pierogi you may ask? They are an age-old Eastern/Central European delicacy that serves brilliantly both as an appetizer as well as the main course of a meal. Pierogi are basically dumplings of unleavened dough – first boiled, then baked or fried with butter and onions. The best part is – perogies are super diverse and can be stuffed with anything, from potato filling and cheese to ground meat and sour cream, or even your choice of fruit. You can have all sorts of fun with cooking them too! Pierogi can be semicircular, triangular, rectangular or any shape you want if you’re feeling creative!

Fried Perogies – Yum!

Traditionally considered ‘peasant food’, the exquisite taste of pierogi quickly spread across Poland throughout all social classes including nobles. Outside Poland, they are very popular in other European countries such as Slovakia, Romania and Ukraine. Many cookbooks from the 17th Century describe pierogi as a staple of the Polish diet, and each traditional holiday had its own special kind of pierogi. Different kinds of fillings and shapes are observed for occasions such as Christmas and Easter, and important events (such as weddings) have their own special kind of perogies – ‘kirniki’ – filled with delicious chicken meat. There are also ones made especially for mourning/wakes, and even some for caroling season in January!

Surely, a country that gave birth to this wonderful cuisine must be pretty amazing itself. Here are some fun facts you may not have known about the Republic of Poland to ‘chew’ over before Taste of Poland:

  • Poland is the 69th largest country in the world, 9th largest in Europe.

    Marie Curie – A Polish physicist, chemist and two-time Nobel Prize winner.

  • Poland boasts 17 Nobel Prize winners, including four Peace Prizes and five in Literature
  • Polish born astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus was the first person to propose that the Earth was not the center of the universe
  • Saint John’s Kupala is a popular holiday in which people jump over fires, a tradition that predates Christianity
  • In Wroclaw there is an annual citywide medieval festival, including jousts, horse archery, medieval dances and other activities
  • Pizza in Poland does not contain tomato sauce. The waiters bring sauce to the table in a pitcher, and you pour it on top. Sometimes, the sauce is just ketchup.
  • There is a ‘Pope Channel’ on TV. Anytime one wishes to see the pope, they can tune him in
  • In popular Polish culture, bananas are peeled from the blossom end, not the stem end
  • The most popular name for a dog in Poland is Burek which translates directly to ‘brownish-grey color’
  • In Poland, the name day is considered more important than the birthday
  • Around 90% of Poles have completed at least secondary education

We hope all this information has you excited for YP ‘Taste of Poland’. Tickets are $15.00 only, and June 13th is quickly approaching. Be sure to mark your calendars, you don’t want to miss the opportunity to learn how to make pierogi from local Polish experts, enjoy eating your delicious creations, and meet with other globally minded Bostonians. Get tickets in advance please so we can buy the right amount of ingredients, details can be found here! We hope to see you all there!

Pyongyang Will Persevere?

By Lesley Ta, Malden High Junior and UN Reporter for the 2013 Invitational Model UN Conference

International communication and foreign diplomacy have become increasingly imperative tools in the modern era. With seemingly endless limits to accelerated information, the world has become a place where set boundaries are surpassed with increasing regularity. There has been growing concern over the leadership capabilities of the current generation. With technology’s expanding force, many traditional methods have been abandoned; alas, the current generation is the first to ride out the newly intimate world with an edge.

Will our children seamlessly succeed into our governments?

IMG_2992

Students learn valuable skills, such as public speaking, conflict resolution, and compromise at MUN conferences

United Nations (UN) simulations are gaining ground throughout the world. Thousands of middle school aged and high school aged students are participants in these conferences. They often set a solid foundation for public speaking and a passion for international relations.Will they continue to fight our wars, to initiate the same mistakes? Will they learn to become informed, enlightened individuals?

In each conference, pairs represent a single country; they are responsible for accurately representing the country’s response to an authentic developing issue. The role – playing required of students can often be contemplative of oneself; it is common to observe delegates becoming passionate regarding their duties as ambassadors.

The United Nations Security Council, both genuine and simulation, is considered the most prominent congregation of the United Nations.

Absolute members of the Security Council total 15 countries; five of which are permanent: China, France, Russian Federation, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Current totating member countries are: Argentina, Azerbaijan, Australia, Guatemala, Luxemburg, Morocco, Pakistan, Republic of Korea, Rwanda, and Togo.

The General Assembly (GA) is the only division of the UN with representation from all member countries. The GA elects the rotating seats of the Security Council (SC) and may constitute recommendations of action to the council. The GA is not privileged to decide on the SC responsibilities of peace and security.

The United Nations Association of Greater Boston (UNA-GB) hosts the Invitational Model United Nations Conference (IMUNC) at Northeastern University (NU) annually. Sponsored by National Grid and Global Classrooms, this convention is available to both public and charter schools in Boston and it’s surrounding cities: Cambridge, Chelsea, Lynn, Revere, Malden, Somerville, Everett, and Worcester.

Middle school and high schools students were exempt from participation fees due to the financial support provided by UNA-GB’s generous donors. The 2013 IMUNC was postponed from March 8th to April 1st due to an intense snow storm.

At nine am on April 1st, participants were greeted with the well wishes from the directors of NU’s International Relations Council and UNA-GB’s Curriculum and Instruction Manager, Rebecca Corcoran.

IMUN Secretary-General Evan Brunning expressed inspirational roots; Brunning began participating in Model United Nations as a college student.

IMG_3004

Students step into their roles as delegates

IMUN Head Delegate Katherine Teebagey opened the floor to questions and generally received inquiries from middle school students. The younger crowd’s questions focused on the law career opportunities that the IMUNC could open.

The High School Security Council was assigned to settle on North Korea’s nuclear threats. All countries selected for this committee mirrored the existing countries in the official United Nations Security Council.

Present countries were: the United Kingdom, Russian Federation, Australia, China, Guatemala, Pakistan and South Korea.

Boston Latin Academy’s delegates portrayed the Russian Federation, Pakistan and South Korea. The John D. O’Bryant School of Math & Science from Roxbury sent delegates to represent Pakistan and the United Kingdom. The positions of Australia, China, and Guatemala were secured by delegates from Malden High School.

North Korea was not in attendance to this event, however would have been depicted by Lynn Classical High School. Another Course to College, Academy of the Pacific Rim, and Lynn English High School were also not present. All absentee schools had country assignments for the Security Council debate.

The first session of the Committee occurred between 9:30am and 12:00pm. Chair Teebagey opened the formal debate with a volunteer speakers’ list. Discussion and consideration of issues were scattered and disorientated. Countries were either brief or reserved in their declarations.

Toward the end of the leading committee session, Chair Teebagey declared for a more ordered speakers’ list. All present dIMG_2993elegations had to speak.

Chair Teebagey intended on ensuring the assessments of each country in attendance; her procedure proved to be instrumental for the situation at hand. After each territory had spoken at least twice, Chair Teebagey and the council members were satisfied at the clarification the proceeding gave.

With each standpoint given, perspectives were gearing in preparation for the second and final committee session.

Commencing at 12:45pm, countries were absolutely consumed and attached to means of humanitarian aid to the peoples of North Korea (NK).

Chair Darnell Louis and Vice-Chair Richard Yu of University of Massachusetts Boston moderated the committee for the duration of the second session.

The United Kingdom (UK) announced a focal point on humanitarian efforts, and was willing to give monetary reliefs; they mentioned a possible directory for self-defense in case of North Korean contentions.

IMG_2988

Australia expressed fierce opposition to aid contributions; however they asserted sincere concerns for the people in need. In response to the Russian Federation’s wish of “diplomatic relations”, Korea’s and Guatemala’s “economic sanctions”, Australia adamantly pointed out their personal failed treaties with NK.

Pakistan suggested befriending NK in order to “force them to act in a reasonable way.”
China was accused of “not signing economic sanctions”, however repelled such statements. Australia fired at the Chinese delegation, believing that “China’s aid [to NK] was obligated.” China confirmed that it was the “bulk of the humanitarian aid” that NK was receiving; China responded to aid apprehension by stating that the assistance was for the “uplifting of the N. Korean state.”

The Russian Federation (RF) urged for caution when the discussion shifted to military action. Guatemala and Pakistan were anxious over the possible pretense of war, and concurred with the RF. Testifying indignantly, Australia stated that “it was not the sanctions that had made NK go bad, it was the N. Korean decision to not [follow them].”

The Republic of Korea eloquently added that there must be “unity and safety within the U.N. if NK goes to war.” They spoke earnestly on how unnecessary the NK threats were. The UK reiterated the concurrence of “safety and diplomacy first,” and a precedent for last resort military actions taken against NK with prepared reserves.

The Security Council passed for a moderated caucus discussing the details of a draft resolution. The moderated caucus immediately concentrated on the types of humanitarian aid applicable, and on what manner it should be delivered.
RF eliminated the option of monetary aid, however wished to concentrate on food, shelter, children and education.

The RF also believed that random inspections may be an option to ensure the distribution of aid to the general population. China strongly disagreed with this suggestion. The UK called attention to the N. Korean mentality, and the difficulties of providing aid within such a mindset. UK also clarified its military reserves as a “defense mechanism” rather than an anticipation of an “attack.”

China indicated the contradictory actions of imposing sanctions while giving aid. Guatemala chided China’s “refusal of a resolution.”

The Security Council passed for a five minute unmoderated caucus to in order to entice all veto -powered countries to agree on all terms of the proposed resolutions.

Amina Egal, representing the United Kingdom, stated that the country was “taking the North Korean threat seriously” and that a “state of war” was a possibility.

A troubled UK was desperate in convincing China to assent with military actions.
Australia’s Wyler Giordani and Jean Gedoan were exasperated with China’s disregard for the draft resolutions.

In response to China’s insensibility to military action, Giordani stated “ .. when a country is uncooperative and/or refusing to compromise, that is when the debate is over.”

Gedeon added that there was an interminable cycle of arguments occurring between China and the other delegations. Zeyu Zheng and Jiohnnie Diaz of Pakistan aspired to pass a long term solution; they believed that a short term solution would be a militaristic based one.

Zheng commented that the heated debate between the UK and China developed because each had advantages in passing/vetoing a resolution.

Guatemala’s delegate, Cara Mulligan, disclosed that “North Korea carries a huge problem,” but does not “pose as a threat.” Mulligan made it clear that Guatemala is anxious over the unpredictability of North Korea’s actions and the possible effects Guatemala will face as a result.

Mulligan represented Guatemala solo for the second committee.

Elahd Hain and Michael John of the Republic of Korea also shared Australia’s dismay. “China’s not listening,” they briefly commented, “we want a whole set of plans and China [only] wants a part [of them].”

China refused to comment during the unmoderated caucus.

Resolution 1.1: “Should diplomacy fail, economic sanctions will be implemented.” An amendment was added to ensure that “military intervention was ok as long as there was North Korean military aggression.”

IMG_2990

Voting

An amendment was made to 1.1 as a result of the negotiations during the unmoderated caucus. Military action was to be the last, final resort to North Korean military aggression. This draft resolution passed with three abstaining, two “no” votes, and “four” yes votes.

Resolution 1.2: “Focusing on the people in North Korea as a government, [there will be a] discontinuation of monetary funds…but will have access to food, water, clothing, and education.”

Sponsored by the RF and South Korea, this resolution passed with a no vote from Australia, an abstain from Guatemala, a Pakistani pass, turned yes vote joining with China, RF, UK, and Republic of Korea.

Resolution 1.3 was vetoed by the United Kingdom, although had yielded a no vote from the Republic of Korea and yes votes from the rest of the delegation.

The High School Security Council had passed their resolutions around an hour before the conference ended. An emergency conflict was thrown at the Council, however did not receive much dedicated attention. The first conflict was civilian unrest in Mali of the Congo, however a situation with infighting within the North Korean government proved to be more appealing to solve.

The delegates of the United Kingdom, from The John D. O’Bryant School of Math & Science, were proclaimed the best public speakers.

Representatives of the Russian Federation, from the Boston Latin Academy, received the award for best position paper.

As of the conclusion of the 2013 IMUNC at Northeastern University, Malden High School’s China received the Security Council “best delegation” award.

A night of glamour at the 2013 Consuls Ball

KAT_8875Last Friday, UNA-GB hosted the 2013 Consuls Ball, which celebrates the Consular Corps of Boston, at the Fairmont Copley Hotel. During the ball, Governor Deval Patrick’s proclamation was read declaring April 26, 2013, as Consular Corps Day in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts. About 30 Consuls from countries such as Korea, France, Turkey, Ireland, to name a few, were in attendance.

KAT_8855This year’s Consuls Ball celebrated Korean culture. Consul General of Korea Kangho Park gave some remarks. A short-clip with a message from UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon was also played. There were also performances by Ms. Youngsook Song and Dr. Chuljin Lee. Ms. Song played a traditional Korean instrument known as the Gayageum and Dr. Lee performed a traditional Buddhist dance.

The evening also consisted of a silent and live auction that included packages to amazing destinations like the island of Azores, Cape Cod, the Bermudas, among many others.

KAT_8813UNA-GB also presented its annual Leadership Award. This year’s recipient was Joseph E. Aoun, President of Northeastern University. Aoun has strengthened Northeastern’s leadership position in experiential and cooperative education, created global programs with urban perspective, and fostered a research enterprise with eight federally recognized centers and institutes.

KAT_8640The Consuls Ball helps support UNA-GB’s Model UN program. Model UN teaches middle and high school students to think critically about complex global issues.

More pictures to be posted on our Facebook page soon!

We hope you can join us in 2014 for our next Consuls Ball!

Why you should seriously consider attending the Consul’s Ball: Hobnobbing with the Elite of Boston’s International Community

If  the title doesn’t give it away let me explain.  The Consul’s Ball is a fun-filled night with dancing, dining and entertainment . Along with the dancing, dining and entertainment the Consul’s Ball gives attendees the chance to meet some of the most influential people in Boston’s international community.

Image

Still not convinced? 

How about the chance to win some awesome prizes? Each year at the Consul’s Ball there is a live and silent auction in which attendees can bid on some lavish and exclusive prizes. This year you can bid on a vacation in the Azores, a long weekend in Bermuda, Sports Extravaganza (with Red Sox, Bruins, Celtics and Revolution tickets) in the live auction; silent auction packages to destinations all over New England, fun activities to do in the city, and much more; plus add in our mystery box items and you have so many options for going home with an awesome package!

Ok if you’re not still impressed let’s see if we can pull at your heartstrings.  All proceeds from the Consul’s Ball go to help fund UNA-GB’s Model United Nations programming. Model United Nations allows students  to explore global issues and their possible solutions. Model UN has  also allows  students  to gain a greater appreciation for the world that they live  in, but also makes them  realize that they  can also make a change. It’s about letting the young people of the future become aware about the world around them and allowing them to feel like they can make a difference not later but now. 

Image

So if you want an excuse to dress up to the nines, hobnob with the elite , a chance to win amazing prizes and a wonderful opportunity to give to a great cause then you should definitely check out  the 2013 Consul’s Ball on April 26 at the Fairmont Copley Hotel.

 

Country Sponsor for 2013 Consuls Ball: South Korea

south-korea-flagWe are thrilled to announce that this year’s Consuls Ball will be held on Friday, April 26 at the Fairmont Copley Plaza.  The Consuls Ball is an elegant, vibrant event celebrating Boston’s international spirit and honoring the Consular Corps of Boston, which represents nearly 60 countries. This year’s ball will focus on the Republic of Korea, a modern democracy with a thriving economy. In order to prepare you for this event, here are some facts about Korea that you should know:

–       The current President of South Korea is Park Geun-hye, the first woman to serve in this position.

–       One of the fastest growing economies, Korea ranks 15th in the world by nominal GDP.

–       Korea is an industrial nation at the forefront of semiconductor, automobile, shipbuilding, steel making, and IT industries.

–       In 2010, Korea hosted the G-20 summit in Seoul, the first Asian country to chair and host a G-20 summit.

–       In 2012, Korea held the Nuclear Security Summit.

–       Korea has gained a non-permanent membership to the UN Security Council for the 2013-2014 period.

–       UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is from Korea.

–       “Korean Wave” is the name given to Korean dramas, movies, and music that are gaining massive audiences abroad.  One notable example is that of PSY, the notable singer who has popularized the song Gangnam Style.

–       In 2018, the Winter Olympics will be held in PyeongChang, South Korea.

2596588743_054a9338b1Now that you know some basic facts about Korea, you should join us in celebrating its rich and vibrant culture at our Consuls Ball. For more details about the ball, check out this link: http://cb2013unagb.eventbrite.com We hope to see you there!

*Many thanks to our Gold Sponsor -Focus Country

The_Korea_Foundation Korean_Consulate_Page_2