WFUNA’s flagship Global Citizenship Education program, Mission Possible, concludes another successful International Agents of Change Conference.
NEW YORK, NY – From January 28-30th, the World Federation of United Nations Associations (WFUNA) hosted its fourth Mission Possible International Agents of Change Conference, on the theme of Youth Action for Inclusiveness and Equality in the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).
The Conference welcomed Mission Possible students from Vidyashilp Academy in Bangalore, India. Over the past months, students have devoted their time and efforts in addressing the SDGs and other issues in their local communities. WFUNA also welcomed five students from Avenues: The World School in New York City who currently lead their school’s social startup club, Design 4 Impact (D4i).
Over three days, students attended briefings and workshops from United Nations representatives, Member States, and civil society organizations. UN Women and the UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs provided fruitful insight on how the UN works with member states in advancing the SDGs and other priorities. “It was nice to interact with people from [the UN] to know what they do at a large scale. They’re the ones facilitating the policy-making process making the policies while we’re the ones implementing them,” a student participant shares. Briefings at the Permanent Missions of the Republic of Kenya and of the Republic of Korea to the United Nations, gave students an opportunity to engage with diplomats on the role Permanent Missions play in advancing different development priorities at the international level. Civil society organizations – such as WaterAid, the Baha’i International Community, and WFUNA – highlighted the importance of working at community level for achieving the targets of the SDGs.
A key element of the conference emphasized youth, whether it be through forming advocacy groups, leading social startups, pioneering community projects, and most importantly, using their voice. Students experienced this first hand at Avenues: The World School, when the D4i team led an interactive design-thinking challenge on SDG 5.Mission Possible Students collaborated with other students from New York to design solutions addressing challenges related to gender inequality.
While discussing pertinent issues related to education, climate change, clean water and sanitation, health and wellbeing, gender equality, and many more, students were able to recognize the complex linkages between all 17 of the Sustainable Development Goals, and the importance of inclusiveness. “I never looked at it this way,” a student participant reflects, “but each of the SDGs relates to one another, and now I see that working together is a baseline in solving problems.”
Mission Possible was launched in India in 2015 and in Singapore in 2017 with the support of the Project Management Institute Educational Foundation (PMIEF). Learn about Mission Possible here. Photos of the conference are located here.