United Nations Youth Queensland Inc (Mackay Forum)

On 23 and 24 March, Grace Emmert and Ethel Tusaumwe (Year 11 students), accompanied by Mrs Anne Miles, attended the Mackay Forum of the United Nations Youth Queensland Incorporated at Whitsunday Anglican College.   The Forum gives students an opportunity to learn and deepen their knowledge on International and Domestic issues and how the United Nations Security Council operates.  Students were involved in workshops on Human Rights, Terrorism and Advocacy.   Grace and Ethel then had a mock crisis situation, involving North and South Korean governments.  Diplomatic negations and teamwork were the focus of this experience.

Students were able to represent an assigned nation (United Kingdom) at a Security Council meeting with three proposed resolutions to be debated.   A Mock Security Council session was held, where students must propose, debate, negotiate resolutions and amendments diplomatically.  This was a first for Holy Spirit College and Grace and Ethel represented the school exceedingly well, getting two amendments through the entire process.  The experience is exciting, with the focus on learning in a fun environment.   The day is led by engaging young facilitators who are passionate about the United Nations and International issues.

It is anticipated the next Forum will be open to any student wanting to take part (with Years 7 and 8 students having a modified program).  The skills learnt and developed on this day are invaluable. The ability to actively engage with one’s peers, and discuss with poise, passion and diplomacy is a crucial skill not only for secondary and tertiary education, but also to be successful in the workforce!

United Nations Youth Queensland Inc. offers a gateway to many opportunities, including educational tours of EuropeEast Timor, the Middle East and New Zealand for secondary school students, and a tour of the USA for tertiary students.

Congratulations to Grace and Ethel for pioneering Holy Spirit College in the International world of the United Nations.

I loved it!  It was a great way to express my views and everyone was really welcoming for my first time.  I will definitely do it again! – Grace Emmert

It was a very fun event that introduced me to the different sides of debating.  A fun day with like-minded people! – Ethel Tusaumwe