WFUNA will hold its 4lst Plenary Assembly hosted by UNA-Canada in Vancouver on November 18-22

Linda Nordin, Secretary-General the United Nations Association of Sweden, (UNA-Sweden) issued the following statement at the recent meeting of Nordic/Baltic UNAs in Tallinn, Estonia: “The United Nations Associations of Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Lithuania, Norway, and Sweden met for an annual meeting in Tallinn, on September 7-8, 2015.

“The Nordic Baltic UNAs made a statement during the meeting expressing their support for the Secretary-General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-moon, in encouraging the Security Council to restore its responsibility over the conflict in Syria and for the permanent members of the Security Council to look beyond their national interests, and to work for a resolution of the conflict in Syria.”

“The UNAs also encouraged UN Member States to increase their financial contributions to United Nations organizations involved in humanitarian assistance to Syrian refugees and Internally displaced persons. “

Participants in the Nordic-Baltic meeting in Tallinn had an opportunity to meet with the Swedish Ambassador to Estonia, Anders Ljunggren, representative of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Paul Teesalu, General Director of the Political Department, and attend a reception at the Embassy of Sweden in Tallinn, Estonia. In addition, there was an open seminar entitled “A better United Nations for the future”, presentations by UNAs, and a discussion on “Nordic/Baltic UN-Politics”.

Looking ahead to upcoming events, the 4lst Plenary Assembly of the World Federation of United Nations Associations (WFUNA) hosted by UNA-Canada will be held in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada on November 18-22, 2015.   According to WFUNA, the theme will be “Global Transformation: The Sustainable Development Goals”.  As members of WFUNA, the Nordic and Baltic UNAs have been invited to participate in this session, along with other UNAs from around the world.

The World Federation of United Nations Associations (WFUNA) describes itself as” a global non-profit organization representing and coordinating a membership of over 100 national UN Associations (UNAs) and their thousands of constituents. “

Based on the Preliminary Agenda, there will be a WFUNA Seminar on November 18, a WFUNA Capacity-building session on November 19, a Heads of Delegation meeting on November19, and the 4lst Plenary Assembly will be held on November 20-22.

The 2nd World Global Youth Forum will be held in conjunction with the 4lst WFUNA Plenary Assembly in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

Recently at UN Headquarters in New York, UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon turned his attention to the fact that “millions of youth have told the UN about the world they want.

Others contributed to drafting the Global Youth Call.  And the Major Group for Children and Youth has spared no efforts in mobilizing youth-led organizations all over the world to make sure youth are at the forefront of the new agenda.”

United Nations Associations (UNAs) in Northern Europe’s Baltic Sea Region which includes the Baltic States and the Nordic countries, are continuing to pay attention to the role of youth within the framework of UN objectives, and as UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon put it, “with Governments agreeing on a bold new sustainable development vision to trans-form our world by 2030,” at the same time, “youth faces many challenges.” He added that” more young people are speaking out for human rights and advocating global action for people and the planet.”

In the Baltic States, the youth-oriented United Nations Association of Estonia (UNA-Estonia) based at Tartu University in Tartu, Estonia,  and the United Nations Association of Lithuania (UNA-Lithuania) headquartered in Vilnius,  strongly support the newly founded youth division at Vytautas Magnus University  in Kaunas, Lithuania. The Baltic UNAs became members of the World Federation of United Nations Associations (WFUNA) in 1993.

To these Baltic UNAs, continued cooperation with the Nordic UNAs is key to their success as members of the World Federation of United Nations Associations (WFUNA). According to the World Federation of United Nations Associations,” WFUNA is a global non-profit organization representing and coordinating a membership of over 100 national United Nations Associations (UNAs) and their constituents.”

UNA-Lithuania, under the leadership of its Honorary President Algis Tomas Geniušas was founded over 20 years ago in Vilnius, Lithuania, and was followed by the establishment of UNA-Latvia and UNA-stonia. Mr. Geniušas, a Shakespeare scholar, and former professor at Vytautas Magnus University, served as President of UNA-Lithuania for 17 years before Jūratė Landsbergytė assumed the leadership role of Executive Director, United Nations Association of Lithuania (UNA-Lithuania).

Jūratė Landsbergytė, Executive Director, UNA-Lithuania, would like to see more young Lithuanians become global citizens in 2015-2016.   In addition, Kadi Neemre, Secretary-General of UNA-Estonia head-quartered at Tartu University will continue to focus attention on innovative programs geared to Estonian youth. Both these UNAs agree that the Baltic UNAs need to continue working closely with the Nordic UNAs in the region, and other UNAs affiliated with WFUNA.


PHOTO: A better United Nations for the future. The representatives from United Nations Associations from the Nordic and Baltic countries to discuss how to build a better UN for the future. Photo © Kadi Neemre