United Nations and Human Rights: Latest News

Screen shot 2013-06-24 at 1.09.57 PMThe International Association of Sufism is non-profit organization, and a DPI/NGO associated with the United Nations. Members of IAS have participated and presented on topics related to faith-based initiatives and social justice at conferences and meetings at the UN Headquarters in New York, and are in dialogue with other faith leaders regarding issues of global concern.  As an active human rights advocate, IAS disseminates information focused on Human Rights, Social Justice, Education, Women’s Rights offered and organized by the United Nations.


You are cordially invited to a screening of AfroLatinos

Monday, 27 February 2017
United Nations Headquarters
Conference Room 4
6:30 to 8:00 p.m. 

To attend, please RSVP here.

Screening followed by a Q&A with:

Renzo Devia
Director of “AfroLatinos” documentary

Iyawó Alicia Anabel Santos  
Writer / Producer of “AfroLatinos” documentary

Organized by the United Nations Department of Public Information.
Co-sponsored by the Permanent Mission of Haiti to the United Nations.

Registered guests can pick up their tickets at the UN Visitors Entrance, on 1st Avenue at 45th Street, starting at 6:00 pm on 27 February.

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Education for Global Citizenship

16 February 2017 * 3:00 – 4:45 pm * ECOSOC Chamber, UNHQ, New York

Feb 16 Global Citizenship Invite


World AIDS Day 2016

Join UNAIDS for a special event to commemorate World AIDS Day and the commitment to move forward together to end the AIDS epidemic by 2030 as part of the Sustainable Development Goals.

The event Moving forward together: Leaving no one behind will also honour the leadership of United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and his legacy of leaving no one behind in the response to HIV.

The UN Secretary General, President of the General Assembly, and celebrities will attend.  

The event will take place on 30 November 1100-1200 in the Trusteeship Chamber, and will be open for attendance of member states, Civil society, UN entities and staff.


New York Launch of the Africa Human Development Report 2016 on

Accelerating Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment in Africa

Thursday 13 October 2016

The Regional Bureau for Africa is honored to invite you to the New York Launch of the Africa Human Development Report (AfHDR) 2016 – Accelerating Gender Equality and Women’s Empowerment in Africa.

The report has generated a great deal of interest among media, policymakers, and advocacy groups since its global launch on 28 August during the TICAD VI Conference in Nairobi, Kenya.

Analyzing the political, economic, and social drivers that hamper African women’s advancement, the report calls for bold policies and concrete actions to close Africa’s gender gap.

This High-Level Event which will take place on Thursday 13 October during the 2016 edition of Africa Week will be a follow-up to the discussion started in Nairobi.

Key Speakers will include:

Mr. Abdoulaye Mar Dieye, Assistant Administrator and Regional Director for Africa

H.E. Mr. Abdallah Wafy, Chair of the African Group

Jeanne d’Arc Byaje, Permanent Representative (a.i.), Rwanda

H.E. Mrs. Martha Ama Akyaa Pobee, Permanent Representative, Ghana

H.E. Ms. Ambroisine Kpongo, Permanent Representative, Central African Republic (TBC)

Dr. Ibrahim Assane Mayaki, Chief Executive Officer, NEPAD

Prof. Ndioro Ndiaye Coordinator, Réseau Femmes Africaines Leaders pour la Paix et le Développement, AfHDR Advisory Group

Dr. Jeni Klugman, Harvard Kennedy School, AfHDR Advisory Group

TIME: 3 PM to 4:30 PM

VENUE: Permanent Observer Mission of the African Union to the United Nations

3 Dag Hammarskjöld Plaza 305 East 47th Street, 5th Floor






Intl Day of Peace Sept 16

Sept 13

Peace Day Youth Summit – Friday, Sept. 16, 2016

3:00 – 5:30 pm, United Nations NY Conference Room 4



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Sept 13


Sept 13 Notice

Sept 13

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Special Invitation to the World Humanitarian Day Event at the United Nations

Friday 19 Aug 2016, 6:30-9:00 pm

World Humanitarian Day


Academic Impact

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The 2016 ECOSOC Integration Segment (2-4 May, ECOSOC Chamber), chaired by H.E. Mr. Sven Jürgenson, Vice-President of ECOSOC, will address the theme “Implementing the 2030 Agenda through Policy Innovation and Integration”. It provides a platform to identify opportunities and challenges in developing integrated and innovative policy tools to implement the 2030 Agenda. H.E. Mr. Taavi Rõivas, Prime Minister of Estonia and UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will participate in the opening of the event. The first session, “My Perfect Country“, a BBC World Service programme will be aired in collaboration with the Institute for Global Prosperity, University College London. The event will bring together high-level representatives of the Member States, the UN system, civil society, academia and the private sector.

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Education for Global Citizenship: Achieving the Sustainable Development Goals Together

Session organized in collaboration with the Youth Subcommittee to the 66th UN DPI/NGO Conference – 28 April 2016, 10 am – 1 pm

Invitation Youth Pre-Conference Session



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This coming Sunday, April 10 at 12 noon, on WOR-TV, Channel 9, the public affairs program, “New Jersey Now,” hosted by the Media Subcommittee’s Jim McQueeny, will air an 8-minute segment focused on the upcoming 66th UN DPI/NGO Conference in Korea.

Featured guests are Jeff Brez, Chief of NGO Relations and Advocacy at UN DPI, and Dr. Mary Norton, professor and executive director, the Center for Global Academic Initiatives at Felician University. 

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NGO Resource Centre


International Decade for People of African Descent

Exhibit Opening – 12 January 2016; 6:00-6:30: Invitation_Intl Decade_African Descent

International Day of Commemoration and Dignity of the Victims of the Crime of Genocide and of the Prevention of this Crime

9 December 2015; 1:15 to 2:45 pm: Genocide_invitation

Youth-led Briefing: Youth at the Forefront – Bridging the Gap Between Climate Change and Climate Action

12 November 2015 11 am to 1 pm


Book Launch: Moving Away from the Death Penalty

Thursday, 5 November 2015; 12:30 pm. Download flyer: The Death Penalty_OHCHR

Screening of the film “The Man Who Mends Women” and discussion with Dr. Denis Mukwege

Wednesday, 21 October 2015; 6:30 – 9:00 pm.  Download flyer: Film Screening 20151021


International Day for the Eradication of Poverty

Friday, 16 October, 2015; 1:15 – 2:30 pm. Download flyer: idep2015flyer


International Day of Older Persons

Thursday, 15 October; 10 am – 1 pm. Download flyer: idop2015flyer


UN Remember Slavery

Panel Discussion: 
Self-Representation as a Strategy to Fight Racism

Wednesday, 16 September 2015
United Nations Headquarters
ECOSOC Chamber
3:00 to 5:00 p.m.

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Invitation – Self-Representation as a Strategy to Fight Racism – 16 Sep


On the occasion of the International Day of Democracy
“Space for Civil Society”

Tuesday, 15 September 2015
1:00pm – 2:45pm
ExPress Bar, 3rd floor, General Assembly Building 
United Nations Headquarters

Democracy Day invite


Watch UN Web TV

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Special event to mark the 70th anniversary of the signing of the Charter of the United Nations – Friday 26 June 2015, at the United Nations Headquarters




June 2015 – Vol. 19, No. 6 | Print version

Joint call for nations to invest ahead for people and planet

With less than two months to go, the countdown is intensifying for the Addis Ababa Conference aimed at securing the resources needed for the well-being of people and the health of our planet. In a joint call, the principals of the organizations behind the event urge world leaders to come to the Ethiopian capital ready to commit to a financing plan which will help us achieve our aspirations to end extreme poverty by 2030. Read More

High-level Political Forum on sustainable development prepares for post-2015

From 26 June to 8 July, the High-level Political Forum (HLPF) on sustainable development will meet for the second time under the auspices of ECOSOC and the third time since its creation. The Forum will have an essential role in steering and reviewing progress towards the sustainable development goals and the post-2015 development agenda once Member States adopt them in September. In line with this task, its theme will be “Strengthening integration, implementation and review – the HLPF after 2015″. Read More

Modest growth of global economy continues

The world economy continues to grow at a modest pace, with a gradual improvement projected for the second half of 2015 and 2016, according to the United Nations World Economic Situation and Prospects as of mid-2015 report, launched on 19 May. Growth of world gross product is projected to improve slightly from 2.6 per cent in 2014 to 2.8 per cent in 2015—a downward revision by 0.3 percentage points from the forecast presented in the World Economic Situation and Prospects 2015 (WESP) in January. Read More

Global dialogue
Trends and analysis
Capacity development


Culture and Conflict – Art as a Prevention Instrument – April 23, 11:00 am



20-24 April

20-24 April negotiating session for the Post-2015 Development Agenda

20-24 April


Autism Awareness


Women and Slavery


Victims of Slavery



Your Voice Matters

Your Voice Matters: Join our e-Discussion on Innovation and Technology For Inclusion. For Equality. For People

Your Voice Matters


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  Check out these stories and more at http://un-dpa.tumblr.com/

Top Stories this week:

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In West Africa trip, UN’s political head calls for ‘free, fair and peaceful’ elections, unimpeded transition
Ahead of the scheduled election in Burkina Faso later this year, the top United Nations political official has warned that the international community will not tolerate any obstacle to the transition. 
Read more: http://un-dpa.tumblr.com/post/110753985314/in-west-africa-trip-uns-political-head-calls-for

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Digital diplomacy: UN’s Department of Political Affairs in 140-character bursts

The Department of Political Affairs’ presence on social media is relatively new but clearly growing. DPA joined Twitter, the platform that now counts the vast majority of the UN’s 193 Member States as participants, in 2012. As the DPA Twitter account nears 100,000 followers, Politically Speaking looks at how some in the UN use this powerful platform.
Read more: http://un-dpa.tumblr.com/post/110869545429/digital-diplomacy-uns-department-of-political

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Virtual Photo Exhibit
A sneak peak at some of the photos that will soon be showcased in UN political offices. 
View the gallery: http://un-dpa.tumblr.com/  

Strategic Communications and Public Affairs   
United Nations Department of Political Affairs 
Office of the Under-Secretary-General


High-level Panel on “Staying Together – Dialogue in the Face of Violent Extremism”

Monday 26 January 2015, 12:30 pm – 2:30 pm

Invitation 26 January 2015_rev


Symposium on the Protection of Religious Minorities Worldwide

November 13, 2014 – 3:00-5:30 pm, UN ECOSOC Chamber


Argentina   Austria   Costa Rica   France   Greece   Tunisia   UNESCO

The Permanent Missions of Argentina, Austria, Costa Rica, France, Greece and Tunisia to the United Nations and UNESCO would like to cordially invite you to a High-Level and Interactive Panel Discussion

“Ending Impunity: Upholding the Rule of Law”
Monday, 3 November 2014
1:15 – 2:45 PM, ECOSOC Chamber, United Nations Headquarters, New York
On the occasion of the 
1st International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists
(2 November)


Non-UN badge holders, mandatory RSVP by COB Thursday, 30 October

to Ms Hellin Brink, at h.brink@unesco.org or (212) 963 5995

Visitors’ Entrance to UN Premises at 1st Avenue and 46th Street

·         Ambassador Michel Spinellis, Permanent Representative of Greece to the United Nations.
·         Mr Getachew Engida, Deputy Director-General of UNESCO.
·         Mr Joel Simon,  Executive Director, Committee to Protect Journalists (CPJ).
·         Dr Agnes Callamard,  Director, Global Freedom of Expression & Information, Special Adviser to the President, Columbia University.
·         Ms Nadia Bilbassy-Charters,  Foreign Correspondent, Al-Arabiya News Channel and MBC TV,  Board of Directors of International Women’s Media Foundation.


The United Nations General Assembly adopted the Resolution on Safety of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity at its 68th Session on 18 December 2013 (A/RES/68/163). This landmark Resolution “condemns unequivocally all attacks and violence against journalists and media workers, such as torture, extrajudicial killings, enforced disappearances and arbitrary detention, as well as intimidation and harassment in both conflict and non-conflict situations”. The Resolution, first in the UNGA directly addressing the issue, also proclaimed 2 November as the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists.

For more information, see Concept Note, also available at http://www.unesco.org/new/en/EndImpunity

Beijing+20, Leaving No one Behind: Women, Poverty & Participation

Thursday, Oct 16th, 1:15-2:30 pm

Beijing 20

First Meeting of the Leading Group on Social and Solidarity Economy


Monday, 22 September 2014
Conference Room 8, Conference Building
UN Headquarters, New York

With live web cast at: webtv.un.org

UN-NGLS is pleased to invite you to the first meeting of the Leading Group on Social and Solidarity Economy. This meeting is co-sponsored by the Permanent Mission of France to the United Nations and the Mont-Blanc Meetings – International Forum of the Social and Solidarity Economy Entrepreneurs.

The Leading Group on Social and Solidarity Economy (SSE) was created in 2013 with the aim to promote the SSE worldwide, making this form of collective entrepreneurship and cooperative economic relations accessible to all people, and increasing the recognition of this economic model in innovative development policy debates and practices.

The Leading Group on SSE is currently composed of 5 Member States (Colombia, Ecuador, France, Luxembourg, Morocco, and Québec as non-member observer), the 20 UN agencies in the UN Inter-Agency Task Force on SSE (including UN-NGLS), as well as international civil society networks working on SSE.

The event will focus on:
Implementation of public policies for the social and solidarity economy;
Promotion of and support to SSE enterprises and organizations worldwide.
Please find the event program here.


Moving to Implementation: Findings from the UNDG Dialogues on Post-2015 Implementation

UNDG Dialogues

25 September 2014, 11:30 am – 1:00 pm
Trusteeship Council Chamber, United Nations Headquarters, New York
Please join the UN Development Group for an interactive panel discussion: RSVP here

Ban Ki-moon, UN Secretary General
Helen Clark, UN Development Group Chair
H.E. Mike Eman, Prime Minister of Aruba
H.E. John Dramani Mahama, President of the Republic of Ghana
H.E. Yun Byung-se, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Korea
H.E. Natalia Gherman, Deputy Prime Minister of Moldova
Forest Whitaker, UNESCO Special Envoy for Peace and Reconciliation
Rajesh Mirchandani, BBC, Moderator

Follow the discussion live via #dialogues2015 and webtv.un.org
For questions email us at post2015.events@undg.org


UNDG logo

AfricanRegional Economic Communities Briefing, Wednesday, October 1, 2014

African Regional Economic Communities briefing to United Nation member states on the role of Africa’s regional economic communities in consolidating peace, security, governance and development in the context of Agenda 2063. Wednesday, October 1, 2014, 10:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Download the PDF here.

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Panel Discussion to mark the National Day of Charity – Friday, 5 September 2014

An Invitation from the Permanent Mission of Hungary to the United Nations


65th Annual United Nations DPI-NGO World Conference 27-29 August 2014

Announcing Pre-Conference Off-Site Events

Interactive Forum- Awakening of Civil Society in Ukraine

Welcome to Harlem- DPINGO Off-site event


What Fracking Means for the World – Discussion forum 16 July 2014 1:15 pm

What fracking means for the world 16 july


End of Season: Town Hall Meeting

26 June 2014 at 11 am



Every Drop of Water Makes a Difference

NGO-led briefing on 19 June 2014 at 11 am, Conference Room 4, UN Headquarters, New York

Save the Date 19 June


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UN Department of Political Affairs

May 2014 E-News

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Interview with Under-Secretary-General Jeffrey Feltman

In his latest interview, after almost two years at the helm of the Department of Political Affairs, Jeffrey Feltman surveys recent United Nations efforts to prevent and resolve tensions around the world.

Responding to questions about Syria, the Central African Republic and Ukraine, the Under-Secretary-General provides insights into the toolbox DPA employs as it seeks to strengthen the prospects for peace and security.

The UN’s political chief also reflects on his transition from being a U.S. diplomat to a United Nations official, bringing to bear the universal values of the organization and the collective weight of the international community.  Read the interview.

cover page annual report DPA

DPA Annual Report

 In its just-published report to donors, DPA looks back on a year of unprecedented levels of voluntary funding in support of its wide-ranging activities to prevent and resolve crises around the globe.

Read all the news from the UN Department of Political affairs at: http://www.un.org/wcm/content/site/undpa/


“Media Freedom for a Better Future: Shaping the Post-2015 Development Agenda”

Thursday, 1 May 2014, 10:45 am – 1 pm; UN Headquarters New York

World Press Freedom Day 2014


Sustainable Energy for All Forum – June 4-6, 2014 in New York

United Nations Decade of Sustainable Energy for All 2014-2024

Sustainable Energy 201404


Remember Slavery

As part of the 2014 Commemorative activities for the International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade, you are cordially invited to the screening of the Film “Toussaint Louverture” by Philippe Niang.

Saturday 8 March 2014, at 1:00 pm at the African Burial Ground National Monument

Toussaint Louverture


Focus on Faith – Mormonism  Thursday, 27 February – 11 am to 12:30 pm

2014 Winter-Spring Season Briefings Calendar

4 December 2013

Inauguration Ceremony of UN Accessibility Center


World AIDS Day.jpg

In addition to Dr. Mathilde Krim and Kenneth Cole, and
H.E. Mr. Gary Quinlan, Permanent Representative of Australia to the United Nations 

The Battle of amfAR tells the story of the early days of the HIV/AIDS epidemic when Dr. Mathilde Krim and Hollywood star Elizabeth Taylor fought to put AIDS on the agenda and launched the country’s first AIDS research foundation. 

CCOI is the first point of entry in the UN for the international entertainment industry. We provide film, new media, television, and documentary professionals around the world with access to information about the work of the UN and its priority issues. The UN system is represented in every corner of the world, and CCOI provides a gateway to UN Headquarters, its field operations and UN agencies. 

Please share this invitation with your colleagues 
and RSVP by EOD Sunday, 24 November 2013 
Seating will take place on a first come, first served basis

No Child a Lost Cause

You are invited to attend our Briefing in Observance of the 24th Anniversary of the Convention on the Rights of the Child:

“No Child a Lost Cause: Transforming the Juvenile Justice System ”
When: Thursday, 14 November 2013, 10:15 am- 12:15 pm
Where: General Assembly Hall (NLB)*
Webcast: http://webtv.un.org/


Indigenous Peoples


“We must ensure the participation of indigenous peoples – women and men – in decision-making at all levels. This includes discussions on accelerating action towards achieving the Millennium Development Goals and defining the post-2015 development agenda. “
    Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

The International Day of the World’s Indigenous People (9 August) was first proclaimed by the General Assembly in December 1994, to be celebrated every year during the first International Decade of the World’s Indigenous People (1995 – 2004).

In 2004, the Assembly proclaimed a Second International Decade, from 2005 – 2014, with the theme of “A Decade for Action and Dignity.” The focus of this year’s International Day is “Indigenous peoples building alliances: Honouring treaties, agreements and other constructive arrangements.”

For more information, please visit the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples’ website. We also invite you to read the message of the Secretary-General for this day.



On Monday,  August 12th at 6 p.m. at United Nations Headquarters, Lifetime Television Network will be holding an exclusive VIP reception and screening and panel discussion for their upcoming film, “Baby Sellers”,  which deals with baby trafficking.





“Nelson Mandela’s achievements came at great personal cost to himself and his family. His sacrifice not only served the people of his own nation, South Africa, but made the world a better place for all people, everywhere… He showed the way. He changed the world.” – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

Mandela Day

 “ I am here today as a representative of the millions of people across the globe, the anti-apartheid movement, the governments and organisations that joined with us, not to fight against South Africa as a country or any of its peoples, but to oppose an inhuman system and sue for a speedy end to the apartheid crime against humanity. These countless human beings, both inside and outside our country, had the nobility of spirit to stand in the path of tyranny and injustice, without seeking selfish gain.”
   Nelson Mandela, Nobel Peace Prize Acceptance Address, 10 December 1993 


Visit Mandela Day webpage:  http://www.un.org/en/events/mandeladay/takeaction.shtml

Dear Colleagues,

IAS thanks all who contributed towards Nelson Mandela’s July 18th Day of Service. With your generosity, we were able to raise $350, which was donated to Marin Interfaith Street Chaplaincy to provide food for the street people in Marin on July 18, 2013.


“I call on Member States to step up efforts to assist all those who have suffered from torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment.”  – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

This year is the 25th anniversary of the Committee against Torture. This body — along with other UN human rights mechanisms such as the Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture and the Special Rapporteur on Torture — is vital to strengthening a victim-oriented approach that also includes a gender perspective. This effort was further strengthened by the adoption this year of a UN Human Rights Council resolution focusing on the rehabilitation of torture victims.

Please find here the official message from the Secretary-General for the International Day in Support of Victims of Torture 2013.



Screen shot 2013-06-24 at 9.10.44 AMOn 13 June 2013, we start the 100-day count-down to the International Day of Peace, which is celebrated on 21 September each year.  We want to share with you the message that the Secretary-General has issued for the day, in which he calls governments, civil society, and other stakeholders to support peace-related projects, as well as other relevant information on the International Day of Peace.  The message can be accessed through the International Day of Peace website and read in all 6 official languages.



“Determined to Save Succeeding Generations from the Scourge of War”: A UN Briefing

DPI/NGO Relations and the Permanent Mission of Switzerland to the United Nations

“Since the UN’s creation, the international community has not seen a conflict with the same level of globally widespread catastrophe as the Second World War, which motivated governments toward its creation. Unfortunately, the “scourge of war” has not disappeared. Now, nearly 70 years after the Charter’s signing, ongoing violent conflicts continue to inflict unimaginable suffering around the world.

This Briefing will bring together a diverse panel to discuss the role of war in recent human history and how far humanity has advanced in limiting the scourge of war, particularly since the signing of the UN Charter. The Briefing will highlight various aspects of this topic, including the idea that peace comes through strength, the questioning of increasing militarism in society, and the view that the institution of war should be abolished, just as institutions of slavery, colonialism, apartheid and the prohibition of women from voting have been eliminated.”

Date: Thursday, 6 June 2013, United Nations Headquarters, New York



On May 15, 2013 the United Nations, governments, NGOs, educational institutions and the public at large celebrated the International Day of Families.  The Day was first proclaimed by the General Assembly 1993, and “reflects the importance that the international community attaches to families as basic units of societies, as well as its concern regarding the situation of families around the world.”The 2013 observance focused on what can be done to encourage the further development of both social integration and intergenerational solidarity.  These themes will also be highlighted during the 20th anniversary celebrations of the International Year of the Family in 2014.

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According to UN representatives, “Advancing social integration involves bringing together groups across society, including the most vulnerable, and ensuring their inclusion into the social, political, and economic structures of society. Advancing intergenerational solidarity involves promoting exchanges between generations, and is achieved by developing and encouraging programmes that facilitate increased interaction between younger and older generations. These can include tax benefits aimed at supporting intergenerational care, mentoring programmes at work or the promotion of multigenerational living arrangements, just to name a few.”

A Briefing held at the UN brought together a diverse panel to discuss how making progress on both these fronts can enhance the role of the family in development.  The panel looked at how social integration efforts can best be applied at local, national and international levels, and assessed the role NGOs and civil society activists can play in promoting action on behalf of families.

In a message marking the Day, Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon emphasized: “Families hold societies together, and intergenerational relationships extend this legacy over time. This year’s International Day of Families is an occasion to celebrate connections among all members of the constellation that makes up a family. It is also an opportunity to reflect on how they are affected by social and economic trends – and what we can do to strengthen families in response.”  He identified unemployment among young people, lack of affordable and quality childcare, and inadequate pensions and elder care as especially pressing issues among families.  According to the Secretary-General, “On this International Day of Families, I call on governments, civil society, families and individuals to support initiatives that bring people together across generations toward building a healthier world for all.”

For full text see: Message from the Secretary-General



Unlearning Intolerance Seminar Series

Organized by the United Nations Academic Impact (UNAI)

Monday, 13 May 2013 at United Nations Headquarters

On-demand webcast coverage is available at: http://webtv.un.org


World Press Freedom Day 2013

“On this World Press Freedom Day, we call on Governments, societies and individuals to do their utmost to protect the safety of all journalists, offline and online. Everyone has a voice; all must be able to speak freely and in safety.”

The theme of this year’s World Press Freedom Day, “Safe to Speak: Securing Freedom of Expression in All Media,” aims to rally international action to protect the safety of every journalist in every country and to break the vicious circle of impunity.

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon:On 3 May, 2013 the United Nations commemorates the twentieth anniversary of World Press Freedom Day, an opportunity to renew our commitment in challenging times. More than 600 journalists have been killed in the last ten years, many while reporting in non-conflict situations.  A climate of impunity persists — nine out of ten cases of killings of journalists go unpunished.  We must show resolve in the face of such insecurity and injustice.”

Please read the official joint statement from the UN Secretary-General and UNESCO Director General for World Press Freedom Day 2013


You are cordially invited to the screening of a documentary film to commemorate the Rwanda Genocide. Tuesday, 9 April 2013 – details provided in flyer.

Rwanda Film


First DPI-NGO Youth-Led Briefing

Raising and Empowering Youth to Break the Cycle of Violence Against Women and Children

Key issues to be addressed:

  • Domestic and Sexual Violence
  • Gender-based discrimination
  • Legislative Boundaries
  • Socio-Economic Impact

March 25, 2013 at United Nations Headquarters


Model UN Workshops

The Department of Public Information will be organizing two Model UN Workshops. The first one will take place at the UNIS Vienna from 8-11 July for MUN programmes in Europe and the second will take place at UN Headquarters in New York from 26-29 August for any MUN programme around the world.


Film “Inside Story, highlighting struggles of living with HIV” screened at the UN

February 8, 2013

Celebrating the 51st session of the UN Commission on Social Development, UNAIDS, with the permanent mission of Kenya and Discovery Chanel Education Partnership, will host a special screening of the award winning film “Inside Story.”  The dramatic film captures the struggles and triumphs of a young soccer player living with HIV.


New York, 1 February 2013

“For billions of people around the world, faith is an essential foundation of life. It provides strength in times of difficulty and an important sense of community. The vast majority of people of faith live in harmony with their neighbors, whatever their creed, but each religion also harbours a strident minority prepared to assert fundamentalist doctrines through bigotry and extreme violence.

These acts are an affront to the heritage and teachings of all major religions. They also contravene the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which affirms the right of all to freedom of thought, conscience and religion. It is imperative that the moderate majority is empowered to stand firm against the forces of extremism. But, this can only be achieved through strong leadership.

Next month at its forum in Vienna, the Alliance of Civilizations will continue its efforts to unite faiths and cultures. Whether on the world stage or in their communities, religious and cultural leaders have a responsibility to speak the language of tolerance and respect. This is a central message of World Interfaith Harmony Week.

We must also reach out to young people with a message of hope. Too often marginalized, jobless and facing a future of uncertainty, youth can be easy prey for fanatics offering a sense of cause and community. We need to expose the invalidity of this lure and offer a compelling alternative.

This cannot be achieved by words alone. Young people need jobs and a meaningful stake in a future that they can believe in. The United Nations is currently engaged in defining a post-2015 sustainable development agenda. Our goal is to eradicate extreme poverty in our lifetime and promote equitable economic opportunity for all while protecting the environment. To do that, we need the engagement of all actors – including young people and communities of faith. We live in times of turmoil and transformation – economic, environmental, demographic and political. These transitions bring both hope and uncertainty. Our job is to ensure that hope wins, and our task will be made easier if the followers of all faiths collaborate in common cause. Let us never forget that what divides us is minuscule compared with what unites us. Working together, we can achieve all our goals for peace, prosperity and physical and spiritual well-being.”


ANNOUNCEMENT: Kofi Annan’s book signing event – Monday, 14 January 2013 at 12:30 p.m- North Lawn Building, Room # 4 United Nations Headquarters, New York

The Public Affairs Section has launched the DPKO-DFS “Year in Review” campaign on the UN Peacekeeping digital channels, looking back at another big year in peacekeeping. Please go to the UN Peacekeeping website:  http://www.un.org/en/peacekeeping/

Direct links to some of the specific features of the Review are: The full-size interactive timeline (with photos, stories, videos, infographics etc):http://www.un.org/en/peacekeeping/news/yir2012-timeline.shtml

Photo slideshow: http://www.flickr.com/photos/unpeacekeeping/sets/72157632267602915/show

Facebook/Twitter photo: http://www.un.org/en/peacekeeping/images/pk-collage2012.jpg

Further content will be added in coming days, including video interviews with USGs Hervé Ladsous and Ameerah Haq.

This is the first year that the UN Peacekeeping 2012 Year in Review has gone real time with an end-of-year “Year in Review” online, and marks progress toward richer and more interactive content on the UN Peacekeeping website – aiming at both specific target audiences such as Member States and international organizations, as well as the wider online public.


New York, 19 December 2012

DPI/NGO Relations in collaboration with Lehigh University invites you to the Briefing:  “A Global Call to Action for Sustainable Development: Engaging Young People to Solve the Triple-Bottom Line Challenge- Economic Well-Being, Environmental Sustainability and Social Inclusion”

Date: Thursday, 8 November 2012
Time: 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Location: Lehigh University, Bethlehem, PA 18015


On 5 November 2001, the UN General Assembly declared 6 November of each year as the International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict (A/RES/56/4).

Though mankind has always counted its war casualties in terms of dead and wounded soldiers and civilians, destroyed cities and livelihoods, the environment has often remained the unpublicized victim of war. Water wells have been polluted, crops torched, forests cut down, soils poisoned, and animals killed to gain military advantage.

For information on the International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict, as well as the message of the Secretary-General please follow the link below.
International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict

DPI/NGO Relations invites you to the briefing: “The Impact of Climate Change on People Living in Poverty” (In Observance of the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty)

In celebration of the 67th anniversary of the establishment of the United Nations, the 2012 UN Day Concert: “A Message of Peace,” featuring UN Messenger of Peace Stevie Wonder, will take place on Wednesday, 24 October 2012 from 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. in the General Assembly Hall at UN Headquarters in New York.

The 2012 UN Day Concert: “A Message of Peace” will stream LIVE VIA WEBCAST at http://www.unmultimedia.org and will premiere simultaneously on the BET, Centric, VH1 Soul, VH1 Classic and Palladia television channels in the United States on Saturday, February 23, 2013 at 7 p.m.

International Day for the Eradication of Poverty

“Rampant poverty, which has festered for far too long, is linked to social unrest and threats to peace and security. On this International Day, let us make an investment in our common future by helping to lift people out of poverty so that they, in turn, can help to transform our world.”

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon
Message for the International Day for the Eradication of Poverty

One Day After Peace – Film Screening – Oct. 9, 2012

World Habitat Day – Oct. 1, 2012

Provisional Briefing Calendar Fall/Winter 2012

The United Nations Secretary-General has called for States and civil society to re-affirm commitments to nuclear disarmament, and to ensure that this common end is reflected in national budgets, plans and institutions.  


Observance  of the International Day against Nuclear Tests (29 August) to be held on 6 September

Int. Day against Nuclear tests_Flyer2012



Film Screening: “Searching for Sugar Man” – 20 July 2012

+More Information+


Informal plenary meeting of the United Nations General Assembly

Building a Caring World – Nelson Mandela’s Vision

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

General Assembly Hall, UN Headquarters, New York

10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

This year once again, on the occasion of his birthday, the United Nations General Assembly will pay tribute to Nelson Mandela, acknowledging his contribution to the struggle for democracy and the promotion of a culture of peace throughout the world.

All member states and observers, UN system entities and civil society are invited to attend this special event.

Please R.S.V.P. to gillet@un.org no later than c.o.b. Friday, 13 July.  A limited number of tickets will be available on a first-come first-serve basis.
(Please ensure that “Mandela Day” is included in the subject line in order for your request to be processed)

OHCHR Global Panel on the Death Penalty – Agenda

Statement attributable to the Spokesperson for the Secretary-General on the Meeting of the High Level Task Force on Global Food Security

New York,  27 June 2012

        This morning the Secretary-General chaired a meeting of the High Level Task Force on Global Food Security.

        The Secretary-General welcomes the strong outcome from Rio+20 on food and nutrition security.  Following the launch of the Zero Hunger Challenge last week, the High Level Task Force will be reoriented to focus on the Challenge’s five objectives as a guide for a coherent UN system approach to food and nutrition security.

        The Secretary-General noted that since it was established in 2008, the Task Force had made progress in devising a common comprehensive framework for action for the UN system in food and nutrition security, particularly during recent food crises.  It helped forge united positions among its member agencies in Rio and at the G8 and G20 summits.  The High Level Task Force also supports the Committee on World Food Security as the primary governance body for food and nutrition.

        But with close to 1 billion people still experiencing chronic hunger, he urged agencies, governments, businesses, civil society organizations and the scientific community to eliminate hunger in our lifetimes.

Yours Sincerely,

NGO Relations, DPI
United Nations


Human Rights for Vulnerable People

We invite you to attend the United Nations General Assembly Interactive Dialogue on Prevention of Human Trafficking and Protection of its victims, especially women and children, on 3 April 2012 from 10-1 and 3-6 in Conference Room 2 of the North Lawn Building of the UN Headquarters in New York, invitation attached.  This event will feature an interactive discussion with leading personalities in the fight against modern day slavery.

The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) is the lead UN agency fighting all forms of human trafficking.  UNODC is the guardian of the UN Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, and manager of the UN Voluntary Trust Fund for Victims of Trafficking in Persons.  UNODC works with governments, academia, think tanks, foundations, the private sector, media, and NGOs to combat human trafficking by raising public awareness, engaging in preventative activities, enhancing the capacity and skills of criminal justice professionals and policymakers, and assisting victims through the UN Voluntary Trust Fund for Victims of Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children.  Human Trafficking is a 32 billion dollar a year business, its profits second only to drugs and arms, with most of its victims women and girls.

This event is also open to the public with advance registration.  

To attend please email castillos@un.org or call 212-963-5631.

International Volunteer Day, Dec. 5

This year, International Volunteer Day on 5 December sees a number of special events to mark the tenth anniversary of the International Year of Volunteers (IYV+10). All over the world, different stakeholders will celebrate volunteering and engage in related debates through conferences, ceremonies, marches and other events.
Events at the UN in New York
On 5 December, at the United Nations General Assembly, Member States will discuss volunteering under the item ‘Social Development’. The United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme will launch the first State of the World’s Volunteerism Report and will organize two side events with stakeholders. These will be devoted to exploring partnerships for volunteering, and to think ahead on advancing volunteering beyond 2011. The day will close with the opening of a multimedia exhibition on ‘Volunteers of the World’ at the UN visitors’ lobby and a reception for all partners.
We hope you can join us at the UN in New York but if you cannot please feel free to spread the word among those colleagues you feel should be part of this important celebration. UNV will provide you with more detailed information in due course.

Registration and Access to the UN Premises

We would welcome your representatives to attend the day. Please confirm your presence by filling in the online form at the following link: http://www.surveymonkey.com/s/5_Dec_NewYork  by 28 November 2011 latest.
Please note that all attendants require an entry pass to access UN premises. UNV is unfortunately unable to cover any costs associated with your participation at these events.

NGO Briefing:


Zero Draft Declaration

UNU Legitimacy Series

We are excited to announce the new UNU Legitimacy Series, comprising four workshops examining the legitimacy of the United Nations, providing a platform for critical discussions with academics and public intellectuals about issues of legitimacy as they arise in various aspects of the work of the United Nations. The four workshops are scheduled as follows: Legitimacy and the United Nations on May 23, Legitimacy and Civil Society on May 26, Legitimacy and the Security Council on May 27, and Legitimacy and Peace Operations on June 8. Participants can register to attend any or all of the above workshops.

The introductory seminar in the series, The UN and the Legitimacy Challenge, will take place at the following:
Date: Monday, 23 May 2011
Time: 1.15-2.30pm EST
Venue: Secretariat Room 8, General Assembly Builiding
United Nations Headquarters, New York
Speakers Ian Hurd from Northwestern University and the Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, and Tom Tyler from New York University, discuss the following questions: How is legitimacy defined? To what ends can international organizations use their legitimacy to carry out their functions and duties? How does legitimacy translate into an organization’s recognition by its peers and the people it serves?

They further argue that legitimation can come in many ways, including through the process of deliberation, from following correct procedures, and by achieving substantive results. Each of these has different implications for the work of the United Nations. The seminar examines ideas about how legitimacy can be gained, how it can be used, and how it can also be lost in the context of the United Nations and its operations.

Interested parties can attend the event in person at the UN headquarters, or participate via live webcast on our video portal. Registration can be made via their website.

NGO Briefing:

Water for a Healthy World: The Challenges of Producing Clean Water

Provisional Winter/Spring 2010 NGO Briefing and Events Calendar
January – June 2010

14 January
NGO Screening
The End of Poverty

21 January
NGO Briefing
Faith Series: Building Bridges Between Cultures: A Closer Look at Hinduism

28 January
NGO Briefing
The Moroccan Jews and Their Legacy of Survival (In Observance of International Day of Commemoration in Memory of the Victims of the Holocaust – 27 January)

4 February
NGO Briefing
Why the Numbers Continue to Rise:  Cancer Today (In Observance of World Cancer Day)

11 February
NGO Briefing
The Prevention, Prosecution and Protection of the Trafficking of Women and Girls

18 February
NGO Briefing
Promoting Global Tolerance and Harmonious Communication through Multilingualism
(In observance of International Mother Language Day – 21 February)

25 February
Communications Workshop

4 March
NGO Briefing
Theme TBA
Making Pregnancy Safer: Achieving Millennium Development Goal #5 (In Observance of International Woman’s Day – 8 March)

11 March
NGO Briefing
Water for a Healthy World: The Challenges of Producing Clean Water (In Observance of World Water Day – 22 March)

18 – 19 March
Orientation Programme for New NGOs

25 March
NGO Briefing
Theme TBA
(In Observance of International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade)

1 April
NGO Briefing
Girl’s Education: An End to Poverty?

8 April
NGO Briefing
Making Cities Healthier: What Can Civil Society Contribute? (In Observance of World Health Day – 7 April)

15 April
NGO Briefing
Finding a Workable Solution to Internal Exile: A Look at the Plight of the Internally Displaced

22 April
NGO Briefing
Disarming for Peace and Development: The Need to Move Forward on Nuclear Non-Proliferation since Mexico 2009 (in reference to NPT Review 4-15 May)

29 April
NGO Briefing
Empowering Citizenship: Media, Dialogue and Understanding (In Observance of World Press Freedom Day – 3 May)

6 May
Communications Workshop

13 May
NGO Briefing
The Impact of Migration on Families Around the World (In Observance of the International Day of Families – 15 May)

20 May
NGO Briefing
“May I Ask a Question: Madame Administrator?” – Helen Clark from the United Nations Development Programme

27 May
NGO Briefing
Theme not yet finalized.
Blue Helmets Go Green
(In Observance of the International Day of Peacekeeping -29 May)

3 June
NGO Briefing
Theme TBA
(In Observance of World Environment Day – 5 June)

10 June
NGO Briefing
High Tide, High Crime: Piracy and other Crimes of the Sea (In Observance of World Oceans Day – 8 June)

17 June
NGO Briefing
Theme TBA
On Review of the MDG’s

24 June
NGO Briefing
Town Hall Meeting

Venue for the Briefings will be posted as soon as the information is available. United Nations-produced videos relevant to the briefing theme are usually screened at 10:00 a.m. on the morning of the briefing.
For briefing information please call the DPI/NGO Information Line at +1-212-963-7232, or e-mail dpingo@un.org. To receive the briefing information electronically and to be added to our e-mailing list, please e-mail dpingo@un.org. You can also visit the DPI/NGO Section website at www.un.org/dpi/ngosection, where an archived webcast of the briefings may also be available.
Should you require a guest pass to attend an NGO briefing, please fax your name and affiliation to +1-212-963-2819 no later than two days before a briefing. All guest passes should be picked up at the Pass & ID Office on the morning of the briefing, which is located on the corner of First Avenue and 45th Street at the ground level.

United Nations, DPI/NGO Resource Centre, Room L-1B-31
Tel: +1-212-963-7233, 7234, 7078 * Fax: +1-212-963-2819 * E-mail: dpingo@un.org

A Place to Call Our Own: Land Disputes and the Rights of the Poor

The United Nations University Office at the UN, New York (UNU-ONY) in cooperation with the International Development Law Organization (IDLO), is organizing a panel discussion entitled “A Place to Call Our Own: Land Disputes and the Rights of the Poor”. This forum is intended to highlight some of the knowledge and ideas relating to legal empowerment that have been captured in recent working paper series of IDLO.  Some of the key points of discussion will include the unique characteristics linking the diversity of legal empowerment approaches, legal empowerment programming and the interrelation between the state and civil society in the context of legal empowerment of the poor.

The panel discussion will feature Thomas F. McInerney, Director of Research, Policy, and Strategic Initiatives, IDLO, Stephen Golub,  Editor, IDLO Legal Empowerment Working Paper Series and Adjunct Professor, Berkeley Law School and Central European University, and Dr. Hamid Rashid, Senior Advisor,  Legal Empowerment, United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). The session will be moderated by UNU-ONY’s Director, Dr. Jean-Marc Coicaud.

The event is part of the UNU-ONY Midday Forum Programme, whichoffers an intimate and informal platform to the UN Permanent Missions, the UN Secretariat, UN agencies, academia, NGOs and the private sector, to discuss and exchange ideas and experiences on important topics related to the UN.

Date: Thursday, November 19th, 2009
Time: 1.15 p.m. to 2.30 p.m New York Time (GMT -5)

WMD – We Must Disarm

The United Nations Department of Public Information has been running a multiplatform online campaign on Twitter, Facebook and MySpace called ‘WMD – We Must Disarm’, leading up to the International Day of Peace on 21 September 2009.

The UN theme for this year’s IDP is nuclear disarmament and non-proliferation. Each day since 13 June (100 days before the IDP), ‘WMD – We Must Disarm’ issues a “reason to disarm” over Twitter (www.twitter.com/WeMustDisarm). Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon issued the first 10 messages. The UN plans to deliver the 100 messages to world leaders at the General Assembly when they meet in September.

Join the campaign on Twitter by becoming a “follower” and by”retweeting” the messages, and sign up to the Facebook cause page (www.causes.com/wemustdisarm) or the MySpace page (www.myspace.com/wemustdisarm). We also urge your communities to sign the Declaration against nuclear weapons which can be found on all three online platforms. See the UN International Day of Peace website for more information.

Solidarity: The Way to Peace and International Cooperation for Human Rights, Human Responsibility and Spirituality

UN Logo
Imagine a room of mirrors, reflecting back upon each of us and within each of our hearts, magnifying the compassion, valuing each other, allowing peace to resonate within and beyond each of us. Imagine that we represent solidarity, standing together with the clear intention that we act in unity toward supporting global peace. We are ere to carry this image within our hearts, reflect it everywhere we go and truly live the essential truth that humankind is responsible for human rights and spirituality is the vehicle for achieving that goal.

This is the general message of the work of the International Association of Sufism as a Department of Public Information for the United Nations. This work falls in the domain of humanitarian intervention as a role for civil society in that each of us at the International Association of Sufism is working for one goal of peace. We work in prisons, we work with the homeless, we work with mothers and children dying from the AIDS epidemic, and we pray for peace. We represent humanitarian intervention by actively engaging in the resolution of critical conflicts, we stand between the offenders and the offendees and serve to provide an alternative, namely, solidarity in peace. As such, each of us stands as the bridge of resolution, the bridge of understanding and knowledge.

The work of the International Association of Sufism with the United Nations invites each of us to our common point of understanding each other, namely, knowledge. As the world suffers from overcrowding, deforestation, pollution, technological melt downs, competition, violence, HIV, poverty, hunger to name a few current human conditions that the majority of the world struggles under. The world suffers as the individual suffers, as the society suffers. The individual spirit reflects the collective spirit. Sufism offers the world a comprehensive insurance plan – no deductible necessary. It is a plan that is inclusive and brings meaning rather than rhetoric. It acknowledges the significance of life and the value of peace for all humanity.
The Sufi strives in every moment to be in service to Divine, in this service is the lived expression of inner peace and presence of heart. In this service is the lived expression of compassion, human rights, and responsibility. The intention in action leads to healing, change, communication, and understanding.

With knowledge, we can stand together in solidarity and create a civilized world of peace and cooperation built on mutual respect and responsibility. Imagine a reality of solidarity in peace among us.

If you wish to be further involved with our work as a Department of Public Information for the United Nations, please contact us:

UN DPI Projects
General Inquiries
International Association of Sufism
14 Commercial Blvd., Suite 101
Novato, California 94949 USA

Announcements from the United Nations

In an effort to help keep interested stakeholders informed on the latest developments and events leading to the UN Conference on the World Financial and Economic Crisis and its Impact on Development taking place in New York from 24-26 June 2009, NGLS has launched a dedicated weekly ‘bulletin’ up to the Conference.
This sixth issue features an article on two relevant reports recently issued by the UN. It also contains several links to various reports and perspectives from the UN system and civil society.
Readers are also reminded that registration for civil society representatives closes on 5 June.
To read the issue, click on the link below:
NGLS Bulletin 6: UN Conference on the World Financial and Economic Crisis and its Impact on Development

2009 In Review

17 December 2009 [UN_2009_Review]

World Environment Day 2009, June 5th.

The World Environment Day is aimed to promote awareness of the environment and give a human face to the environment threats, involving persons as agents of change towards sustainable development.

In this context, the Permanent Mission of Mexico will screen a documentary titled “Between Fire and Water”, that deals with the question of water in Mexico City.

Description of the documentary: Since the beginning of the history of the world, the harmony of human existence has depended on mankind’s respect for the earth, water, air, and
fire, the four fundamental elements of the planet.

With a population of more than 20 million inhabitants, Mexico City is today one of the largest cities in the world. Surrounded by active volcanoes and subject to frequent earthquakes, and with its drained lakes and channeled rivers, Mexico City finds itself precariously situated “between fire and water,” subject to menacing seismic shifts, excessive stress on its water supply, floods, suffocation, multiple forms of violence–all this despite its many impressive accomplishments, which allow everything to continue functioning, more or less.

Today water management is critical for maintaining life in Mexico City, as it is throughout the world. This film shows how sustainability in Mexico City has begun to develop, and how the most critical issue of water management can be handled in the future, thanks to a new awareness of the need to balance the four elements of the world.

February 2009 Briefing Summary [Briefing_5_February_09]
Briefing Calendar: Spring 2009 [UN_Briefing_Calendar_Spring_2009]

Durban Review Conference Information brief for NGOs

17 April 2009 [UN_Durban_Review_Conference_April2009]

International Day for Mine Awareness

4 April 2009 [UN_mineawareness2009]

International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery

Tuesday, 24, March 2009. Documentary film screenings [UN_slave_trade]

Disarmament: Fresh Answers to Old Questions

Thursday, 30 October 2008 10:15 a.m. – 12:15 p.m. The Dag Hammarskjöld Library Auditorium [UN_NGO_general_invitation_30oct]

Yearbook of the United Nations Website Launched


The United Nations Department of Public Information today launched the first-ever online version of the Yearbook of the United Nations – the world Organization’s flagship reference publication. The new website – unyearbook.un.org – provides free public access to the 59 volumes of the Yearbook collection, detailing the work and achievements of the United Nations system over the first 60 years of its existence (1946-2005). New useful features and volumes will be added as they become available.

The launch of a Web-based version of this extraordinarily rich resource of information about the UN system took place at the opening of first-ever UN Book Days, organized by the Department on 9 and 10 October 2008 at UN Headquarters to showcase information products and services of the United Nations system and intergovernmental organizations.

“The Yearbook is an indispensable resource for anyone interested in the United Nations and its work”, said Kiyo Akasaka, Under-Secretary-General for Communications and Public Information, who presided over the event. “The online edition brings our history and accomplishments to life for countless people across the globe, at a time when knowledge and understanding of the issues affecting our world are crucial to the achievement of the United Nations mission.”

The new site incorporates a user-friendly search function, allowing users to locate any Yearbook reference using key words, phrases or document symbols, by year or range of years. Search results can be displayed in plain text or as a printable PDF file. It is expected that the new website will not only serve as a strong research tool, but it will also help users better understand global issues as they affect them today. It will broaden the Organization’s outreach to the public, increasing awareness of, and support for, the United Nations throughout the world.

The Yearbook of the United Nations remains the most comprehensive and authoritative work on the Organization. Each Yearbook volume provides analysis, is fully indexed, and includes the texts of, and votes on, all major General Assembly, Security Council and Economic and Social Council resolutions and decisions. Yearbook chapters are currently divided into five parts covering political and security questions; human rights; economic and social questions; legal questions; and institutional, administrative and budgetary questions. The online version reproduces all Yearbook volumes up to and including the 1,682-page 2005 edition.
For more information on the Yearbook and access to the entire Yearbook collection, visit http://unyearbook.un.org. For more information on the UN Book Days event, go to http://unp.un.org/bookdays.aspx. The Yearbook of the United Nations, 2005 and earlier editions are available for purchase at the UN Bookshop and through UN Publications at https://unp.un.org/default.aspx.

Contact: UN Yearbook Unit, Tel. (917) 367-9326, email: unyearbook@un.org.

DPI/NGO Relations invites you to a briefing on:

A Call for a Convention on the Rights of Older Persons: The 18th Annual Celebration of the International Day of Older Persons

Thursday, 2 October 2008

Background Information
The International Day of Older Persons is observed each year on 1 October since the General Assembly passed resolution 45/106 on 14 December 1990.

This day is an opportunity to celebrate the contribution and to evaluate their current situation of older persons in society. On 16 December 1991, the General Assembly adopted the United Nations Principles for Older Persons (resolution 46/91), which encourages Governments to incorporate the principles of independence, participation, care, self-fulfilment and dignity into their national programmes (http://www.un.org/ageing/un_principles.html).

In this 60th Anniversary Year of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the NGO committee on Ageing, in New York, in consultation with NGO Relations of Department of Public Information, the United Nations, has decided to focus its 2008 observance of the 18th International Day of Older Persons (IDOP) on a process that will lead to the development and acceptance of a Convention on the Rights of Older Persons. Despite the fact that older persons comprise 11 percent of the global population, they remain largely marginalized and invisible in society. With this in mind, the committee has chosen as this year’s theme, “A Call for a Convention on the Rights of Older Persons.”

Keynote Speakers:
Mr. Sergei Zelenev, Chief, Social Integration Branch, Division for Social Policy and Development, Department of Economic and Social Affairs
Minister Paulo de Tarso Vannuchi, Secretário Especial dos Direitos Humanos in Brazil

Mental Health on “Making Mental Health a Global Priority Through Advocacy and Action”

Thursday, 9 October 2008

Background Information

First observed in 1992, WMHD is officially commemorated each year on 10 October around the world. This year’s celebration will focus on making mental health a global priority for all people and governments in all countries. Since mental disorders affect nearly 12 percent of the world’s population and one out of every four people around the world experience some kind of mental illness in his or her lifetime, mental health should be considered a priority. Moreover, high prevalence of mental health concerns creates a heavy burden on individuals, families and communities that requires a mobilization of human, social and economic resources to provide access to effective and humane treatment for people with mental disorders. In promoting advocacy and action, WMHD will focus on the need for increased resources for mental health, treating and preventing mental disorders, and impacting the mental health systems in countries through overcoming barriers to improve mental health services.

Maria-Luisa Chavez; Chief of NGO Relations, Department of Public Information (DPI)


  • Janice Wood Wetzel, PhD, Chair, NGO Committee on Mental Health
  • Nancy E. Wallace, LMSW; Ex-Officio Chair, NGO Committee on Mental Health
  • Werner Obermeyer; Deputy to the Executive Director and Senior External Relations Officer, World Health Organization (WHO) Office at United Nations, New York
  • David A. Rosin, MD, Executive Deputy Commissioner for Mental Hygiene Services at the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, who will speak on “Raising the Stakes: Making Mental Health a Priority”;
  • John Draper, PhD, Director, National Suicide Prevention Lifeline Network, who will speak on “The Role of Crisis Hotlines in Promoting Access to Mental Health and Suicide Prevention Services”;
  • Mary Guardino, Executive Director/Founder, Freedom from Fear, on “Advocacy, Empowerment and Awareness: A Journey of Understanding and Commitment”;
  • Craig Mokhiber, Deputy to the Director, New York Office, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, on “International Perspectives on Advocacy and Action for Promoting Mental Health”; and
  • Celia Brown, President and Main UN Representative, MindFreedom International, on “Peer Advocacy at the United Nations: Impacting the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities.”
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