Report on the participation of a member of the Croatian United Nations Association (CUNA) and a member of the Croatian Youth Network (CYN) on European cooperation workshop “How to establish a UN Youth Delegate Programme” regarding their cooperation on the project of the UN Youth Delegate Programme(UNYD).
On the invitation of the German and Bulgarian United Nations Association, CUNA and CYN decided to launch a joint project of establishing a UN Youth Delegate Programme in Croatia.
About the project – UNYD Programme
UN Youth Delegates (YDs) are young people, aged 18-26, who officially represent the interests of the youth of their country at the United Nations in New York where they have the opportunity to participate in the work of the UN General Assembly (October usually) or the United Nations Commission for Social Development and the UN Commission on Sustainable Development and the UN Commission on the Status of Women (spring). They are selected to accompany their government’s diplomatic delegation to the United Nations for the duration of 1 to 3 weeks.
YDs are generally selected by a national selection committee, made up of representatives of the national youth council or large youth organizations, the UN Association of a country, the ministry of foreign affairs and the ministry responsible for youth. The selection is based on the qualifications of the candidates (experience in youth organizations and youth work, interest in the UN, communication skills, English language skills etc.).
During their preparation period YDs collect the views and opinions of young people on the current issues on the UN agenda, such as Climate Change, HIV/Aids, Youth in Conflict, Youth Unemployment etc. at youth conferences, youth meetings, seminars, panel discussions, youth campaigns, exhibitions, political events. After returning from New York the youth delegates attend conferences and meetings so as to speak to young people in their country about their experiences and their successes. They participate in the selection procedure for the youth delegates of the following year and they continue to support the programme.
About the workshop
European cooperation workshop “How to Establish a UN Youth Delegate Programme” was held in Mannheim, Germany from the 11th till 13th November 2011and organized by the German and Bulgarian United Nations Association (http://startingunydprograms.wordpress.com/).
The aim of the workshop was to help the participants, who decided to establish the UNYD Programme in their country, write a project proposal and practice how to convince ministries, as well as civil society organizations to support and act as partners or patrons to the programme and fundraise together by writing grants to foundations and potential sponsors.
After a joint application for participation at the workshop CUNA representatives, Natalia Mirković and Maja Kosor, and CYN representatives, Marko Boko and Anamarija Sočo, and their acceptance by the selection committee, a preparation followed. Each participant had to pass the Distance Learning Course (DLC). A test consisted of certain issues on the international youth policy and the work of the UN (the handbook of the WFUNA “Guide for Youth NGOs at UN meetings” http://startingunydprograms.wordpress.com/resources). At the workshop Bulgarian and German UN YDs presented their organization and establishment of the UNYD Programmme, as well as how to write a project proposal draft aimed at three target groups: International Relations/Law Professors, Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the ministries of youth and youth organizations and NGOs (11.11.2011.) The second day of the workshop (12.11.) participants practiced writing funding applications/requests to national foundations and companies and the last day (13.11.) by means of role-play and show-case scenarios, the participants learned how to set up meetings and present their project proposal to possible national partners and sponsors. At the workshop was also presented the work of the European Youth Forum (http://www.youthforum.org/), an umbrella organization of European youth organizations that represents a platform for its members, whose member recently became CYN.
Along with the Croatian team at the workshop participated the representatives of Hungary, Ireland and Italy, and lectures were held by the representatives of the German United Nations Association and representatives of the Bulgarian UN Association as well as of some former UNYDs.
After the workshop, all participants received an official recommendation and certificate of participation.
The materials from the workshop are available on the website (http://startingunydprograms.wordpress.com/workshops).