UNIC Dhaka Meets Children in Rural Bangladesh

09 February 2015

The Government of our country and UN Country Team has been working towards designing a meaningful Post-2015 Development Agenda for Bangladesh. There have been some significant achievements in Millennium Development Goals. We, the UNIC Dhaka team, strive to contribute to this development process.

We have been critically involved in educational outreach activities throughout Bangladesh. While setting up several of our UN events in educational institutions in rural areas we noticed that the children are pro-UN in expressing their opinions about the role and activities of United Nations. Their knowledge about the United Nations never ceases to surprise us, thusly inspires us to try harder to spread knowledge in every corner of Bangladesh.

On our latest educational outreach programme, the UNIC team joined the enthralling students of Bandutia Memorial High School in Manikganj district. The students of Bandutia school mostly come from rural area, where many aren’t aware of United Nations, but the number of children who participated in the programme was more than we expected. The students were full of zeal and were aware of United Nations.

The event consisted of a seminar and a quiz contest about the United Nations. Ms. Kamrun Nahar, Upazila Secondary Education Officer of Ministry Education was the chief guest, and I was the key-note speaker in the seminar. Mr. Mosharraf Hossain, Headmaster of the School presided over and UNIC team conducted the quiz session. Seventy students took part in the event. We set up a presentation session where we tried to depict the functions and tasks of different UN agencies. Issues like peace, development, human rights, health and education were brought up in the Q/A session.

I interviewed a couple of children of the school, after the event, about their thoughts on United Nations. Reema Akhter - a student of Grade-9 - who stood 1st position in UN quiz contest said, “After attending UNIC Dhaka’s event at our school, I have come to know about UN origin, its objectives, and activities. I liked the way the UN works globally and I am motivated. After completion of my education I want to apply to work for UN and serve people. I have been inspired to voluntary work for the community and spread awareness to uneducated parents about sending their children to school.”  Awlad Hossain, a student of class-10, had a similar analogy.

As a part of global network of UNICs, one of our crucial functions is to spread knowledge about the role of UN, especially, about peace, development and human rights, about sundries which will help people all over Bangladesh to grow and develop. We keep all these in account for all the programs we set - we did the same for this. The overall event was not only informational but also interesting. The participants     had fun time learning and were encouraged to spread the word about UN; we ourselves are satisfied with this success.

The International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust

09 February 2015

Holocaust outreach took on a different format this year, one where the UNIC Windhoek team carefully unpacked and taught about the Holocaust to create empathy and understanding among young learners. The inception of the educational outreach programme kicked off with the screening of the documentary film, “Kinderblock 66: Return to Buchenwald”. The students received the historic significance of the day with shock, sympathy and disbelief as the details were fleshed out during a presentation and screening occasion in the school hall.

UNIC asked some questions at the end and were astounded to note how attentive the youngsters were to the teaching. The correct answers were rewarded with a UNIC Windhoek branded water bottles. The presentation carefully guided the primary level boys and girls through the timelines and events that brought about this watershed moment in history. One of the learners light a candle in memory of all the children.

It was a successful educational outreach indeed and it is UNIC Windhoek's mission to advance knowledge and teaching about the Holocaust, which aims to encourage debate and awareness around particular aspects of the Holocaust and genocide.

Foster a love for reading among Namibian Youth

09 February 2015

UNIC Windhoek handed over reading books to the Gammams Primary school library to encourage and build on the reading culture. The reading culture is on a sharp decline in our country, but through book donations and book corners, we can encourage the youth to foster a love for reading, a skill required in all subjects ultimately. Taking receipt of the books is Ms. Kaimo the principal at Gammams Primary school, a school in a disadvantaged neighbourhood. She expressed her gratitude toward UNIC Windhoek for the book donation.

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Participation at the First Africa Region Commonwealth Youth Ministers’ Meeting

09 February 2015

The First ever Africa Region Commonwealth Youth Ministers’ Meeting took place at the Yaounde Conference Centre on 9 February 2015 under the theme; “Young people building a stable and sustainable future”. The opening ceremony was chaired by Cameroon’s Prime Minister; H.E Philemon Yang, representing the President of the Republic of Cameroon. In his speech, Prime Minister Yang urged youths to reject extremism and terrorism. H.E Yang stressed that “our society cannot attain significant socio-economic development without the full participation of youths…so youths should make choices that contribute to the advancement of society.” 

In the words of the African representative of the Commonwealth Youth Council; Mr. Kiziah Philbert, "the youths on their own just need to be treated as an agenda and not only an opportunity". The meeting brought together Ministers with responsibility for youth affairs, senior government officials, youth representatives from Commonwealth countries in Africa. During the meeting, delegates focused on regional and global youth development challenges and opportunities, including new global development goals for 2015 and beyond. The Deputy Secretary General of the Commonwealth; H.E Deodat Maharaj was also present. 

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