CEO Monika Froehler hosts a penal at the 2020 RAUN Conference

2020 RAUN Conference kicked off in Vienna, Austria on January 15th. In cooperation with the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens, University of Vienna, and the International Security and Conflict Analysis Network (iSCAN), this 2-day annual conference was hosted by the Regional Academy on the United Nations (RAUN). This year, the conference had the theme of “Environmental and Socioeconomic Sustainability: How to Create Lasting Impacts,” and was attended by BKMC CEO Monika Froehler and COO Katrin Harvey.

Today, on the 2nd day of the conference, Froehler chaired a panel session on “Innovations for Sustainable Development.” During the session, two research groups actively presented their ideas and the research outcomes and raised critical questions, highlighting the importance of community engagement, needs assessment, clear communication, and courage.

CEO Monika Froehler said,

RAUN research groups looked at sustainable development and innovation through the lens of cities and SMEs. One group explored best practices in ViennaHamburg, and Prague. The other explored SMEs in Vietnam and how the 4th Industrial Revolution impacts them.”

Learn more about RAUN 2020http://ra-un.org/2020-raun-conference.html

© RAUN

CEO Monika Froehler holds a meeting with Ambassador Prakash Kumar Suvedi of India

Yesterday, Ambassador Prakash Kumar Suvedi of the Embassy of Nepal to Austria visited the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens.

In his meeting with CEO Monika Froehler, Ambassador Suvedi was briefed on the work of the Centre. Then they talked about the challenges and pressures existing in Nepal, including the climate issues, natural hazards and issues with a good number of qualified workers leaving the country. Ambassador Suvedi also introduced SAGARMATHA SAMBAAD, a permanent global dialogue forum initiated by the Government of Nepal.

New Year’s Greetings from the Ban Ki-moon Centre and Happy BKMC Anniversary!

Today, January 3rd, 2020, marks the 3rd year and the 2nd anniversary of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens. By its co-founders, former Secretary-General of the United Nations Ban Ki-moon and former President of Austria Heinz Fischer, the Centre was established on this date in 2018 in Vienna, Austria. A BKMC Board Member, Ambassador Sadiq Marafi of the Embassy of Kuwait in Vienna, invited the team to his residence for New Year’s Eve and celebrated the year-end and welcomed the Centre’s new Chief Operating Officer Katrin Harvey.

For the last two years, the Centre has made proud accomplishments and progress in advancing the SDGs through our co-chairs’ leadership, mediation, advocacy, and education. Through various projects, events and scholarship/fellowship/mentorship/training programs, the Ban Ki-moon Centre has aimed to empower youth and women, and we will try to empower more globally in the upcoming years to reach the Global Goals by 2030. To discuss the Centre’s upcoming plans and strategies, CEO Monika Froehler briefed the co-chairs on the progress made, and the BKMC leaders had an important planning session on New Year’s Day of 2020 in Vienna.

Co-chair Ban Ki-moon Gives a Keynote during the 6th Seoul Climate-Energy Conference 2019

“The USA should return to Paris Climate Agreement…It is a political and moral responsibility of the US.”

On December 20, Co-chair Ban Ki-moon attended and gave a keynote at the 6th Seoul Climate-Energy Conference 2019 held in Seoul, Korea. 

The 6th Seoul Climate-Energy Conference, under the theme of “New Climate Regime and the New Normal,” placed heavy emphasis on global climate change discussions and international cooperation. This year’s conference endeavored to redefine what “normal” is as climate change that has been accelerated by unpredictability in global politics and pushes the globe close to the point of no-return. 

Renowned experts from academia, business, industry and policy together reviewed the outcomes of COP 25, examined the tole of higher education in sustainable development, discussed big data as the newest source of clean energy, revisited the importance of the renewable-nuclear alliance, and investigated the prospects of engaging young generations in climate change discussions.

Co-chair Ban Ki-moon emphasized the importance of getting support from political leaders to mitigate climate change effects and promote sustainable development, and said, 

“Every state should make choices for humanity rather than its own selfish national interests. It is the responsibility of sovereign states to engage in transnational cooperation and participate in global challenges.”

 

He also proposed a multilateral approach as a solution. Co-chair Ban said,

“Even a country with abundant resources like the US cannot solve such a multifaceted issue alone. We must act in unity to solve the problem.”

Co-chair Ban then presented an example of Bangladesh,

“In 1971, a fatal cyclone in Bangladesh resulted in more than 300,000 casualties. However, after devising appropriate policies to prevent future lose, the average number of yearly casualties due to cyclones dropped to less than 10. Likewise, if we implement proper measurements, we can adopt to climate change and prevent climate catastrophes.” 

As he concluded his keynote, Co-chair Ban said,

“Former President John F. Kennedy once said that we choose to go to the moon, not because they are easy, but because they are hard. Because solving climate change is also hard, we must do it and do it together.”

 

© Yonhap News

The first World Forum on Non-formal Education convened by the Scout Movement kicks off in Rio de Janeiro

The World Non-Formal Education Forum, convened by the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM), UNICEF, UNFPA and the Office of the UN Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth, kicked off in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil on December 9th and will run until December 11th. The Forum is the first convening of its kind offering an international platform for ideas on non-formal education and aiming to explore how organisations can keep pace with the latest trends in non-formal education and contribute towards achieving the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

“Non-formal education is a prerequisite for meaningful engagement in modern society. We are witnessing the largest generation of youth the world has ever seen, and it is our responsibility to ensure that every young person has access to opportunities that allow them to thrive in this rapidly changing society,” said Ahmad Alhendawi, Secretary General of the Scout Movement, who also serves on the Ban Ki-moon Centre’s Board.

Moderated by Alhendawi,

the first plenary session was held under the theme of “A Changing World of Learning: Where does Non-Formal Education fit in?” where BKMC CEO Monika Froehler featured as a key speaker.

She said “a life-long learning is incredibly important and non-formal education is actually much faster than formal education and is a pioneer in the life-long learning platform.”

“We need people that have agency. We need people with a global citizenship mindset,”quoting Jack Ma, Founder of Alibaba Group and Jack Ma Foundation, Froehler said that this is exactly what non-formal education says.

Contrary to the notion that education happens only through the formal educational curriculum, non-formal education is what happens in places such as youth organizations and clubs, and community groups where young people meet to undertake projects together, facilitate peer-to-peer learning, and engage in activities like camping, music and community service. Research highlights the increasing relevance of non-formal in building a wide-range of competencies that are necessary for a changing-world.

Jayathma Wickramanayake, the UN Youth Envoy, stressed that there should be “mutual respects across generations and within the generation.” Leading the youth panel discussion, she agreed that young people should not be expected to bring new solutions but rather that they are here to encourage the decision-makers to actually implement the solutions.

The three-day programme features a series of main panel discussions led by sector experts, stage talks, innovation labs and over 30 interactive sessions and side events. Among the key outcomes of the event will be a joint statement referred to as the Rio Declaration, presenting action items and commitments to advance the agenda and investment in non-formal education.

“Non-formal education is a powerful force for empowering young people to become active citizens and create social impact towards sustainable development. The next three days will bring key actors on board to drive more recognition and investments in non-formal education and allow us the opportunity to collaborate internationally and form successful partnerships,” said Pia Melin Mortensen, Member of the World Scout Committee and Chair of the World Non-Formal Education planning team.

The event is also providing a platform for alliances of youth orgnaisations to convene their annual side meetings including the International Coordination Meeting of Youth Organisations (ICMYO) and the “Big 6” group of youth organisations which includes the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts, YMCA, YWCA, International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies, and The Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award.

 

“We are small organizations but have enormous impacts. Our work is super valuable,” said one of the participants from the audience at the youth panel discussion.

 

Watch the live streaming here:

Welcome to #NFEforum Live

Article Source: https://worldnfeforum.com/largest-specialized-world-forum-on-non-formal-education-kicks-off-in-rio-de-janeiro/
Highlights: https://worldnfeforum.com/highlights-of-the-day/

© Enrique Leon / World Scouting

 

BKMC awards innovative social leaders from Latin America “Latin America Leader Award 2019”

On December 4th, the Global School for Social Leaders hosted a Latam Awards Ceremony 2019 in support of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens, Humanist World, Cámara de Diputados, 1 Million Startups, and GIAO at the Impact Hub in Vienna. At the ceremony, the top 8 selected social leaders and innovators from Latin America, who work for the SDGs, were awarded the “Latin America Leader Award 2019.”

Giving a keynote, BKMC CEO Monika Froehler asked the audience,

“Do you believe that you can make a change in this world?”

She said that by networking and cooperating with each other, we will eventually be able to convince that “we CAN make it happen.”

Froehler also introduced the Ban Ki-moon Centre’s partner Global Citizen to the gathered social entrepreneurs by explaining how it all started as a small initiative by young change-makers who now raise billions of money to make changes in the global society and how individuals can contribute to creating a bigger impact by doing global citizen deeds.

Ambassador Alejandro Solano of the Embassy of Costa Rica in Austria, Consul Fernando Flores of Ecuador in Austria, Diego Masera, Chief of the Renewable Energy Unit at UNIDO, and other SDG experts and global social entrepreneurs also delivered speech and presentations.

© Global School for Social Leaders

BKMC CEO Monika Froehler Attended SDG Forum 2019

On November 29, BKMC CEO Monika Froehler attended SDG Forum 2019 held in University of Vienna.

Organized by SDG Watch Austria, the forum was dedicated to discussing Austria’s progress in implementing the Sustainable Development Goals together with all relevant actors in politics, administration, science and industry.

At the forum, Minister for Sustainability and Tourism Maria Patek opened the SDG Forum highlighting the pioneering role of the Ministry of Sustainability in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda and the achievement of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.

She said, “In the summer we presented our SDG Action Plan 2019+, which summarizes all initiatives of the Federal Ministry for Sustainability and Tourism. If we all persistently and committedly implement the measures in our sphere of influence, we will reach our goal more quickly. The realization of the UN SDGs is a shared responsibility that we must take on for the next generations.”

Thomas Alge, CEO of ÖKOBÜRO – Alliance of the Environmental Movement and co-founder of SDG Watch Austria, also a gave a welcome remark and said,

“The climate crisis, species extinction, poverty and inequality are highly interconnected. Climate change particularly affects agriculture. It leads to harvest losses and intensifies insect killing. Drought and other climate catastrophes are forcing people from the most affected regions of the world leave their country. The new government must therefore quickly face these challenges and make the implementation of the 2030 Agenda a top priority. Coherent implementation of the Global Sustainable Development Goals can effectively address many of the big challenges of the time.”

Sami Pirkkala, Advisor to Finnish National Commission on Sustainable Development, also presented about Finland’s efforts in implementation of the SDGs: launching a voluntary commitment platform towards the SDGs and gathering more than 1,600 commitments from companies, education sectors, cities and individuals.

Chairman of Austrian Partner Universities Uninetz, Franz Fehr illustrated strategic goals, milestone and daily work of Uninetz and indication of which university leads which subject area of the SDGs. 

A panel discussion on “Where Do We Stand on the SDGs in Austria,” focusing mainly on ways in which Austria’s new administration can adopt the 2030 Agenda and take a leap toward the SDGs implementation, was moderated by Nina Thüllen and featured stellar panelists including:

Parliamentarian Michael Bernhard;

Parliamentarian Josef Moser;

Ambassador Sylvia Meier-Kajbic;

Councilor for Environment and Women Judith Schwentner;

Secretary-General Thoams Weninger;

Managing Director Anja Appel.

© SDG Watch Austria 

WEP GCC Fellows Participate in a Round Table: Effective Women Leaders

“I don’t want you to lower your expectation, but I want you to lower your self-criticism.”  – Helena Zimmerdahl from the Embassy of Sweden

Women’s Empowerment Program (WEP) is in its full swing! As a part of BKMC’s Women’s Empowerment Program, WEP GCC fellows participated in a Round Table hosted in Diplomatic Academy of Vienna on November 19.

At this Round Table, Susanne Keppler-Schlesinger, Deputy Director of the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna, featured as a moderator at the Round Table.

Speakers were:

Lulua Asaad from UNODC,

Maggie Childs from Metropole and Austrian Startups,

Mona Ali Khalil from MAK Law International, and

Helena Zimmerdahl from the Embassy of Sweden to Austria.

Lulua Asaad asked the fellows a critical question: “What does leadership mean to you?”

“It is important to have support from women within your network, while not neglecting the role of men.”

She also added that leadership is not about a position one is in, but responsibility leaders are capable of taking in their world.

Regarding women’s empowerment, Mona Ali Khalil said,

“Empowerment of women requires men who are enlightened and women who are willing empower each other.”

As an international lawyer, she stressed that gender parity policies should be actual actions rather than lip service and should effectively address sexual harassment/sexual discrimination issues that still exist everywhere across the sectors.

Minister-Counselor Helena Zimmerdahl pinpointed ‘transparency’ as an important trait of a good leader and said we must “speak up” for ourselves to make our voices heard.

Zimmerdahl also advised the fellows to

“look at yourself and your accomplishments from the outside” in order to empower themselves.

Maggie Childs emphasized the need for getting help from mentors, friends and other experts when necessary and said,

“You don’t have to know everything before you do it… It is lonely at the top. You need to have your private space and friends who just listen to you. Having those friends would make you feel less lonely.”

A follow-up workshop was facilitated by WEP Project Coordinator Viola Christian from the Ban Ki-moon Centre. The fellows were grouped into 5 and discussed advice and points made from the Round Table, which they created their own manifesto with.

© BKMC / Eugenie Berger

For more photos of the event, visit BKMC album.

BKMC CEO Monika Froehler speaks at the Sunday Brunch hosted by the Members of the European Parliament

The Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens’ CEO Monika Froehler spoke at a monthly event hosted by MEP (Member of the European Parliament) Lukas Mandl in Vienna on November 17th.

“The European Union countries provide great examples of how the SDGs can be best implemented. The UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network and Bertelsmann Stiftung‘s SDG Index and Dashboards ranking countries globally are the evidence to that. The Ban Ki-moon Centre is working with this data to do its share, ” said Froehler, introducing the work and mandate of the Centre to the audience.

 

This time, the event was specially co-hosted by MEP Barbara Thaler and Lukas Mandl and featured Ambassador Sami Ukelli of the Embassy of Kosovo in Vienna together with BKMC CEO Froehler as special speakers.

© MEP Lukas Mandl’s Office

BKMC Welcomes the Women’s Empowerment Program GCC Fellows!

“More than ever does the world need young female leaders like yourself to advocate for a sustainable future with a fresh and innovative mind,” said Co-chair Ban Ki-moon in his video message.

Together with the Diplomatic Academy of Vienna, the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens hosted a welcome reception for the fellows of the Women’s Empowerment Program GCC on November 11th, 2019.

“You will shine, and you will empower others to shine with you!” – CEO Monika Froehler

Co-chair Heinz Fischer warmly welcomed the crowd and briefly introduced the history of Austria as a former President of Austria, and BKMC CEO Monika Froehler and Deputy Director Susanne Keppler-Schlesinger of the Diplomatic Academy also delivered remarks on the first day of the program. 

“In these two weeks, you will further develop your skill-set to make sustainable development happen and to empower women globally,” said Monika Froehler during her welcome remarks.

H.E. Ambassador Marafi from the Embassy of Kuwait participated in the welcome reception to welcome and congratulate all the selected fellows from GCC regions.

20 aspiring fellows of WEP GCC gathered from Kuwait, Oman, Bahrain, UAE, Saudi Arabia and Qatar. They will be participating in a 2-week tailor-made program to advance their global potential to promote the Sustainable Development Goals and foster women’s empowerment.

 

Watch a video diary of WEP GCC’s first day!