Learning from a UN Ambassador

H.E. Carlos Garcia, the Permanent Representative of El Salvador to the United Nations, graced the participants of the International Solidarity Forum to talk about the United Nations as a key actor in facilitation and mediation of discussion between nations. In the United Nations, countries have the ability to speak out for policies in different levels of government (state, local, international, etc.) in policy, economics, and social issues. In this way, both national and international agendas may be tended to.

The United Nations also have different committees to address the multifaceted needs that countries face. The 1stcommittee mostly deals with peace in the international community. The 2nd committee deals largely with macroeconomic and financial issues. The 3rd committee focuses on cultural, social and human rights issues. The 4th deals with special issues such as decolonization, while the 5th committee deals with the money and any allocations needed by projects settled by the other committees. Finally, the 6th committee deals with legal issues and the International Court of Justice that may arise such as frameworks for crimes against humanity. Such structure and division enables the United Nations to ensure that the problems of member states are taken into consideration.

While each region and each nation of the world have distinct interests, the reality is that many of these issues are shared, but contextually specific.  Therefore it is important for the United Nations to help facilitate discussions that would eventually lead in positive dialogue between nations. The ambassador encouraged participation and empowerment of vulnerable groups such as the youth. What was especially inspiring was the ambassador’s encouragement for the youth to get involved, first, within their country’s capital. By participating in our home countries first, we are able to develop credibility, which we can carry over if we have the opportunity to represent our nations in an international body such as the United Nations. As members of the youth community, I think our participation is important to show our determination in being active members of civil society. When our contribution is acknowledged, we can prove that the youth are willing to contribute in our nation’s development.

Photo credit

John Sapida is an intern for the North American Office of World Youth Alliance