January 31, 2017  |  

Day 1 in New York from UK young representatives!

New York City was our host for the week, we had arrived from all around the world, 24 colleagues representing, 13 countries and 5 continents. We all planned to meet at West Side YMCA, located just off of Central Park! The meeting was a chance for us all to say hello to each other, speak about what we do and where in the world we come from! This first meeting gave us all a chance to go through some key agendas prior to the start of the main event which was held on the Monday!

West Side YMCA held up the reputation of the good American hospitality and made us all feel welcome, the food served was also lovely.

Monday had arrived, a quick stroll to the UN headquarters and in no time at all we all collected our security tags and headed inside one of the most iconic buildings, which is the world lead on democracy, justice and humanity!

We took our seats inside the main auditorium, YMCA delegate seats dotted in prime positions next to the representatives of the United States and United Kingdom no less.

The Youth Forum was kicked off by an opening statement of the Council President…….. which was followed by a message from UN Secretary General, Peter Thompson and then UN SG envoy on youth. The minister round table gave us a chance to have prime seats in a key discussion and questioning in all matters regarding youth, equality, empowerment, education and eradication of poverty! Delegates asked questions to member states representatives how all these important issues raised are going to collaborate with the UN SDG’s 2030 mission!

After lunch we headed to the breakout sessions, I attended the breakout session regarding SDG 9 ‘Build resilient infrastructure, promote inclusive and sustainable industrialization and foster innovation’. This session gave insight to how we can promote the use of digital currency as an incentive for social and community good, not just for a monetary value, and how communities and youth play a big role in the development of infrastructure and promoting an all inclusive society!

We headed back to the trustee chamber for the final session on day one, we heard all the reporting from the breakout sessions that ran prior! We also had a talk and Q&A with tech professionals on the Role of technology in implementing the SDGs.

The day ended with a group photo of all the YMCA delegates, where we opportunistically held the flag of the UN for the photo……we put it back of course!

By Jerahl Hall, YMCA England.

SDGs and Tags