The Department of Public Information and Non Governmental Organizations (UN DPINGO) hosted a conference on the Intergenerational Dialogues on the Sustainable Development Goals. The day consisted of 6 rotating conference rooms, each one with a specific topic covering one of the sustainable development goals. Each conference room hosted a panel who guided the conversations on how youth and the elderly could work together to address the sustainable development goal that specific room was focusing on. Each room also held a rapporteur.
As rapporteurs, we were part of the volunteer group for the DPI NGO office, most of us also being youth representatives for the same office. We arrived early to meet our panel and the facilitator for each room to ensure that we would be able to follow the conversation and note any specific points the panel felt was important. There were two sessions held during the day so that participants could attend two different conversations. The rapporteurs were tasked with taking notes on the particularly poignant points from the participants. We mostly focused on the specific ways that various generations can work together to help move the world towards the success of the sustainable development goals from a grassroots perspective. I was tasked with the room that was discussing the goal of gender equality. Our discussions mainly focused on the inclusion of the whole LGBTQ+ spectrum when discussing gender equality. One of the panel members was a young trans college student who shared his experiences with the whole conference on the importance of not only the inclusion of young people, but also LGBTQ+ community members in discussions on the SDGs to ensure that the world can find the most comprehensive solutions. He shared that we should move to look at gender as more of a spectrum instead of a binary ideal so that all genders will be equal instead of just men and women.
A few more of the ideas that were shared were programs from UN Women were also because of their process on how to effectively promote gender equality. The program that was highlighted is called the LEAPS framework. The LEAPS framework is an acronym for Leadership, Economic empowerment, Action on ending domestic violence, Partnership and Participation. The use of these 6 things under the LEAPS framework will help to promote gender equality in all communities, especially where women and other members of the LGBTQ community are underprivileged. The elderly requested of the youth that we continue to share our stories and ideas with them so that they can understand the world as it continues to evolve, especially with new slang appearing everyday. One more concrete idea was to include more youth in the conversation by inviting them to be a part of delegations to conferences such as the Commission on the Status of Women every year. Youth can convey new and innovative ideas that no other generation would be poised to contribute. After these conversations were finished for the day, the rapporteurs were asked to speak at the closing plenary for the day to share what we considered to be the most important points from the day and give the conference participants some action items that they can do themselves. After the plenary was over we sent our summaries of the day back to the DPINGO office so they could become a part of the evaluations of the conference itself.
NOTE- this blog post was written by Noelle Sorich. Noelle is a Junior at the School of Diplomacy, double majoring in modern languages with a minor in economics. Noelle is the undergraduate youth representative to the United Nations for Seton Hall. She is also the President of the UNA-USA chapter on campus and the training coordinator of the Model UN team at SHU.
This is the first of a series of blog posts called — A Day in the Life of a Diplo