The school is abuzz with the exciting news that two Grade 11 students will be heading to Kyoto, February 27 & 28, to attend the Kyoto Congress Youth Forum. This is a special precursor event leading up to the 14th United Nations Congress on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice in Kyoto held March 7-12.
We are especially proud of Mina and Steven. Out of the nearly 150 delegates who will attend the Youth Forum from 35 countries and regions worldwide, they were both selected for significant roles. Mina will be the overall Chair of the event, and Steven will be a Rapporteur for one of the three groups that will tackle the main issues students will discuss.
What does all of this mean? First, this particular UN conference is an incredibly significant event. It started in 1955 and is held every five years, marking this year as only the 14th Congress to convene. It is the first time it is being held in Japan in over 50 years, with the last one occurring in 1970! In addition, it is one of the first diplomatic events that Japan is opening up for after more than a challenging year around the world with so many canceled conferences, sporting competitions, and other international events.
The Youth Forum will be held as a hybrid event, so Mina and Steven will be maneuvering between in-person and online communication and participants dialing in from areas all over Asia and beyond.There will be three agenda items that the Youth Forum will cover, and through discussions and negotiations, the delegates will develop solutions and recommendations for the UN Congress sessions the following week:
Youth engagement in preventing youth crime and reintegrating youth offenders.
Youth education for fostering a culture of lawfulness.
Youth commitment towards a safe information society.
As one of two Rapporteurs in his group, Steven's role will be to draft the recommendations from the outcomes of his group's extensive discussions of their agenda item: youth commitment towards a safe information society. He will also be responsible for reporting those recommendations to the Chair, Mina, who will be in charge of communicating the final outcomes of all the agenda items at a plenary session at the end of the Forum.
As Chair of the entire Forum, Mina will address the opening plenary session and sit in on the agenda item discussions. After closing out the Youth Forum sessions at the final plenary, her responsibility will be to attend the actual (real!) UN Congress the following weekend on March 7, where she will represent all Youth Forum delegates and report on their recommendations for the Congress to consider during their sessions.
Before heading off to the conference, they sat down with their teacher and MUN advisor, Mr. Gildart, to discuss their interest in joining the conference and preparing for their leadership roles. Watch and see how their quiet confidence, along with their enthusiasm, sets the tone for this exciting opportunity they are about to embark on.
Nagoya International School couldn't be more proud of Mina and Steven for working hard to have this incredible opportunity, thanks to their concerted efforts and the support of Mr. Gildart, their parents, and the school. Their experience will certainly have a significant impact on their learning and futures, and the impact that the proposals presented to the UN will undoubtedly also be substantial. Stay tuned for part two of this story when we report again on the conference and their stories about their global UN conference adventures!
Until then, you can read more about the Kyoto Congress Youth Forum at the Ministry of Justice's website HERE. You can also see Mina and Steven, along with a number of their fellow delegates introducing themselves HERE.