Oh, the ordinary stories we could tell

This is a guest blog post written by Mark S. Cogan, originally published here

Turkey

I am faced with a dichotomy. While proud of the work I’ve done, I’m equally haunted by ideas failed never materialize. MY World is a global survey for citizens led by the United Nations and partners. It aims to capture people’s voices, priorities and views, so that global leaders can be informed as they begin the process of defining a new development agenda after the Millennium Development Goals expire in 2015.

I had the honor of being the architect of Thailand’s national MY World campaign, and I found it one of the most rewarding advocacy campaigns of my professional life.  When the UN General Assembly arrived last September, Thailand had counted just under 70,000 votes, and ranked third worldwide.

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Youth Diary from Pune, India – By Mr. Aakash Shah, Global Youth Advocate

 

Aakash with Ms. Neelam Gorhe (Member of Legislative Assembly , Maharashtra , India) who gave her commitment to supporting MY World 2015 & the World We Want 2015 and Beijing +20
Aakash with Ms. Neelam Gorhe (Member of Legislative Assembly , Maharashtra , India) who gave her commitment to supporting MY World 2015 & the World We Want 2015 and Beijing +20

Today, I would like to talk about the person who changed my dream of working for development on a global level into reality. He is the person tp whom I give all the credit. He has been a strong pillar to support me in my initiatives and has helped me implement them as planned. He’s the sole reason of the fruit of my efforts. I owe my success in the MY World 2015 and the World We Want 2015 campaigns entirely to this great mentor. He’s the one who also made me realise that women and youth should be involved in this project in order to get the desired outcome. He is none other than Mr. Ravi Karkara Ji. Even a hundred words would be less to express my gratitude towards this great personality. Thanks a million Ravi ji.

‘A youth is the nation’s blood and the architect of tomorrow’s world’.

I indeed feel honoured and privileged to work as a Global Youth Advocate for the My World 2015, and World We Want 2015 campaigns. This came about through my inspiring meeting with Ravi Ji. To live up to the responsibility envisaged upon me as a Global Youth Advocate, I have concentrated my entire focus on involving people from different strata of the society, as well as other initiatives to mobilise and strengthen the campaign. For the same, I have collaborated with Radio Channels, Technical Book Publishers, over 50 educational institutes, hospitals, Private Sectors, NGO’s , political representatives especially women and youth , government schools from rural areas etc. for the promotion of the campaign and thereby motivate people to bring about the change through My World 2015 and World We Want 2015 Campaigns .

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Citizens United to Promote Peace & Democracy in Liberia

CUPPADL, Liberia

Blog by: Prince Kreplah National Executive Director of CUPPADL (www.cuppadl.ushahidi.com), +231886533015

Tuesday May 13, 2014: MY World’s Global Week of Action took place from from Monday, May 5th till Sunday May 11th, 2014. During this week, the United Nations teamed up with youth groups, the private sector, and NGO partners all over the world to launch MY World to gather 500,000 peoples’ opinions about the world they want after 2015. The MY World survey asks citizens everywhere about the issues that make the most difference to their lives.

In Liberia, the Citizens United to Promote Peace & Democracy (CUPPADL) led the initiative to collect votes in six poverty stricken communities in Monterrado County, Liberia. These communities included West Point, Clara Town, New Kru Town, Slipway, Doe Community etc. During the peak collection of votes from these communities, we mobilized the participation of over 400 citizens. The population voted for the six issues they believe needed to be prioritize in national and global development agendas in order to improve their lives and make Liberia a better place to live in.

We chose chose the communities previously mentioned because they have large populations with extreme poverty and poor access to social services despite the fact that they are so close to an urbanized capital. There are 40,000 inhabitants in the smallest community and 80,000 in the largest community.

The top priorities for the 400 voters were: “Better jobs opportunities”, “A good education”, “Better health care”, “Access to clean water and sanitation”, “Political freedoms”, “Better transport and roads”, “An honest and responsive government”, “Access to family planning” and “Reliable energy at home”. I believe the findings of the survey are not only relevant to global post-2015 development agenda, but are also relevant for Liberia in their national development planning.

The data will be useful to global leaders and will aid national development planning by painting an accurate global picture of the top six issues that impact peoples’ lives the most. The MY World survey is an unique opportunity to influence the global development agenda and CUPPADL is glad that Liberians have been heard through their votes.

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Deaf Children in Ebolowa, Cameroon Expect MY World Will Bring Change

Deaf children in Ebolowa, expect MY World will bring change
Deaf children in Ebolowa, Cameroon expect MY World will bring change

By Ntiokam Divine, Global Youth Digital Advocate Post 2015 and MY World 2015 and Bernice Atabong  from CRTV South Region

“The marginalized grassroots are crying that nothing is being done to ameliorate their living conditions,” Father Jude Thaddeus laments as the MY World survey team visits his school to tell him about the survey project. Father Thaddeus is the director of the Pere Monti Centre in Ebolowa, Cameroon.

The center has a boarding primary school which educates children with disabilities. Recently, the MY World volunteers went to this school of 89 pupils, in an effort to get the children to vote for their priorities and contributing to sustainable development goals.

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YOUTHFIM Aims to collect 100,000 Votes in Democratic Republic of Congo

By Benjamin Buyemere, Youthfim Program Coordinator.

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With a profound desire to allow participation and also to make the global campaign “MY World” well known for a large group people, youth gathered in the Youth Forum on ICPD and MDGs, “YOUTHFIM” have set the target of reaching more disadvantaged people, by meeting them in public markets, in the streets, students in Universities and others that are not in contact with information, raising their awareness about the process that is undertook by the UN Millennium Campaign, aiming to gather the voices of all categories of people, in order to contribute to the MY World global survey in the context of the  world we want.

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Reaching Out to Youth in the Poorest Regions of India

By Ms. Natasha Kanvinde, MY World 2015 Youth Ambassador. Ms. Kanvinde has collected over 3,000 votes in the past month and she continues to reach out to youth in the poorest regions in India.

The annoying ringing of my alarm clock woke me up at 5am on a Friday morning. My unaccustomed system groaned in protest, but I heaved myself out of bed. I almost had second thoughts about going on the trip, but then I remembered I wasn’t working for myself, but for the greater good. Little did I know, that today was going to be one of the best days of my life.

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UNA Boulder County Collects Votes at Boulder Creek Festival

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This post was written by Pravin Nair, and Zuza Bohley, United Nations Association of Boulder County: http://unaboulder.org . Please be sure to follow them on Twitter, @unaboulder and also @unausa, and to follow the MY World data Results.

The United Nations Association of Boulder County participated in the Boulder Creek Festival 2014 during Memorial Day weekend, May 24-26. 2014. For over a quarter century, the Boulder Creek Festival has been the unofficial kickoff to summer in Boulder. Widely considered Boulder County’s favorite event, the Festival attracts an anticipated half a million people for three days of festivities, featuring a large variety of events, activities, food and entertainment unique to the Boulder community. The concluding day of the festival, Memorial Day at Boulder begins with America’s all time best 10K race “BolderBOULDER”.

The Festival is free to the public and features something for everyone: 9 separate event
areas with 500 vendors showcase everything from community arts and crafts to health
alternatives and technology while 4 performance stages feature a spectrum of music and dance. The Festival also features carnival rides, food and beverage vendors, and the signature event: a rubber duck race down the creek!

The City of Boulder requires all events within city limits to be Zero Waste events. The
goal at a Zero Waste event is to plan ahead and only distribute materials that are
recyclable, compostable or reusable (i.e. no materials that have to be landfilled).
United Nations Association of Boulder County reserved a booth at the Boulder Creek
Festival; our volunteers included members from Model United Nations club at Boulder
High School & University of Colorado and members from the UNICEF Campus
Initiative at University of Colorado.

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Vice President of Dominican Republic launches MY World with 50,000 vote commitment

(c)MICHELLE RIVAS - PNUD R.D.

SANTO DOMINGO 11 June 2014

The Vice President of the Dominican Republic, Dr. Margarita Cedeño de Fernández has launched an initiative to collect 50,000 votes for MY World. She called upon her citizens to join her in voting in what she considers is a transformative human development initiative for the country and the world.

“Today I want to make the promise with the UN Dominican Republic that we will collect 50,000 votes at a national level. In order to do so, we are putting are making all of the computers in all of the Techonological Community Centers available to the UN, so that people can vote” she added. There will be 94 Techonological Community Center and 4 Centers for Community Solidarity (Prosoli) available for the general public to vote so that they can establish the country’s priorities in the elaboration of the United Nations Development Group’s Post-2015 Agenda.

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The Vice President considered that the agenda should have as a goal a more equitable world, where prosperity is shared and we leave behind human catastrophies that violate the fundamental rights of millions of people in the whole planet.

She also manifested that poverty, hunger, malnutrition, infant and maternal mortality, environmental destrucion and the systematic violation of women’s rights are realities that weigh heavily over the Post-2015 agenda.

She indicated that the new challenges are digital gaps, the productive use of technology, food security, access to clean water, the development of ethical science, and the strengthening of world peace amongst other themes, which should weigh over this new agenda.

Translated from the original UNDP Dominican Republic Press Release (Spanish). Photos by MICHELLE RIVAS – PNUD R.D.

For more information:

 

Nepal Doubles Amount of Votes in One Week, Reaching almost 30,000

MY World Survey volunteer ceremony

During the MY World Global Week of Action (May 5-11, 2014) the adolescent and youth organization Yuwalaya coordinated with the UN Resident Coordinator Office of Nepal and various other youth organizations and schools to raise awareness and votes in Nepal. Through their joint efforts, they were able to collect more than 15,000 votes – doubling the amount from the previous year.

Yuwalaya coordinated with more than 50 youths from various colleges and youth clubs of Kathmandu to do the survey. The volunteers were honored by the United Nations Nepal Resident Coordinator’s Office at the UN House in Lalitpur on Tuesday, 17 June for their contribution to the survey.

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Pakistani Youth Commit One Million Votes During Visit from UNSG’s Envoy on Youth

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Tuesday, June 17, 2014 – Islamabad

Over 300 young Pakistani youth representatives from all over Pakistan gathered on Tuesday at a youth forum to meet and launch the My World Survey with the UN Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth,  Ahmad Alhendawi.

Young boys and girls from different social backgrounds interacted with the Youth Envoy and shared their views and perspectives about their challenges and aims with regards to access to education, skill development, employment, sexual and reproductive health and to their participation in policy making and peace building in the country.

Chairman of Youth Revolution Clan, Rizwan Anwar noted that “Pakistan’s biggest asset is its youth; we are becoming a youth partner in the development agenda and we are committing to raise more than one million votes for the MY World Survey with as many people as possible: citizens of all ages, genders and backgrounds, and particularly the world’s poor and marginalized communities.” He continued “with more than 2000 youth ambassadors, Youth Revolution Clan will be working with civil societies, youth organizations, universities, colleges and government sectors to mark the difference.” He specially thanked Mr. Ravi Karkara, UN Global Advisor on youth & children for his continuous guidance, support and motivation to launch the campaign in Pakistan that has been in planning for the last nine months.

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