Glendon’s DayMUN Reviews the U.N. at 60
Glendon’s second annual DayMUN – Model United Nations Day mounted by the Glendon students’ Model United Nations Club (GMUN) – welcomed 50 delegates composed of club members and high school students from Humberside and Oakwood Collegiates on November 18th.
The DayMUN Secretariat and Conference Staff. Clockwise from left:Brett Ballanger, Emma Cowley, Olga Ilisan, Krysztina Damjanovich, Nathaniel Schroeder, Mathieu Kissin, Siobhan de Graaf, Helen Lam, Marina Ize-Dukuze (from Greenhope for Children), Camaro West, Sheila Ize-Dukuze (Greenhope for Children), Marilyn Ize-Dukuze (Greenhope for Children), Phylicia Davis, June Findlay, Erica Swanson and Tina Taeput.
After a warm welcome from Glendon Director of Recruitment and Liaison Tobi Strohan, who provided information to the visitors about studying at Glendon, the club’s Secretary-General, 4th -year International Studies student June Findlay presented the theme of this year’s conference: ”Challenge and Change: The U.N. at 60”.
Model U.N. is an authentic simulation of the United Nations bodies and subsidiary committees, observing U.N. rules and regulations, including the use of formal debate procedure and a western business attire dress code, with each ‘delegate’ representing a pre-assigned country, chosen from the members of the United Nations.
The day was filled with discussion and deliberation in the two simulated committees. The General Assembly Third Committee (Social, Cultural and Humanitarian) debated solutions for realizing Millennium Development goals, writing resolutions to problems such as extreme poverty and the distribution of development aid. The Commission on Sustainable Development was a hub of activity, producing two resolutions, one on ecotourism and another researching alternative uses and sources of energy.
The speakers' session brought real-world perspectives to the issues being examined in the committees. Shirley Farlinger discussed the relevance and necessity of the United Nations as an international body, in the past, the present and the future. Farlinger also outlined her long-standing relationship with the UN, serving in various committees and conferences over the years. Martin Bunch, an assistant professor of environmental studies at York University, spoke of his experiences with sustainable development within the framework of his ongoing research in Chennai, India. He illustrated the need for clean water and appropriate sanitation systems, and described the effects of the 2004 tsunami on the region. A highlight of the day was the presentation by Marilyn and Sheila Ize-Dukuze, (aged 12 and 9), founders and spokespersons for Greenhope for Children, a non-profit organization seeking to help children in all regions of the world to overcome hardships such as poverty and hunger. These girls had the attention of everyone present as they shared their own experiences of being refugees in Burundi, before coming to Canada.
The award ceremony, at the closing of the day, honoured delegates for their performance during the sessions. Award criteria included taking the initiative for writing resolutions, demonstrating a high level of diplomacy, and maintaining the progression of finding solutions to the issues discussed during the session. Winners included both GMUN members and students from Humberside Collegiate. In his closing address, Glendon principal Kenneth McRoberts congratulated the delegates on a job excellently done.
Above: Delegates schmoozing with guest speaker Shirley Farlinger during lunch. Clockwise from left: Sarah Laflamme, Kristi Plastino, Shirley Farlinger, Nefeli Adamides and Amy Gowans.
A special benefit of the day: the conference was profitable for the first time, enabling the GMUN Club to sponsor their members to the McGill Model United Nations Conference in Montreal in January 2006.
Article submitted by June Findlay and Marika Kemeny