BKMC welcomes all parties of the Austrian Parliament to discuss joint events for youth in Austria

Today, the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens welcomed representatives of all parties of the Austrian parliament (Österreichisches Parlament) to the Centre.

The visitors included Mr. Andreas Schieder, Mr. Hubert Koller, and Mr. Maximilian Unterrainer from SPOE, Mr. Werner Amon, Mr. Nikolaus Berlakovich, and Mr. Josef Lettenbichler from OEVP, Ms. Petra Wagner from FPOE, Ms. Stephanie Krisper from NEOS, and Ms. Alma Zadic from JETZT.

The Ban Ki-moon Centre’s CEO Monika Froehler introduced the mission and the work of the Centre to the delegation. The group discussed possible collaboration for joint events in the parliament regarding youth in Austria.

Symposium on “Empowering Women and Supporting Youth in Development and Global Citizenship”

Hosted by the Ministry of Planning and the MOFA
12th of February, 09:30 – 13:45
Location: Sheikh Jaber Al-Ahmad Cultural Centre, Kuwait

Dear Ban Ki-moon,

Your Excellency Mariam Al-Aqeel, Minister of State and Foreign Affairs,

Your Excellency Khaled Mahdi, Secretary-General of the General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning and Development,

Your Excellency Ambassador Sadiq Marafi,

Excellencies,

Distinguished Guests,

Ladies and Gentlemen,

First of all, I want to say that it is a great pleasure and honour for the delegation of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens to be here in this wonderful country and to participate in the Symposium on “Empowering Women and Supporting Youth in Development and Global Citizenship”.

My first intensive contact to Kuwait was in 1981 when I accompanied Federal Chancellor Bruno Kreisky on his State visit to Kuwait.

I was able to visit Kuwait for a state visit exactly ten years ago, in February 2009, when I learned to appreciate the great hospitality from His Royal Highnesses Emir Sheikh Sabah Al Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah and Crown Prince Sheikh Nawaf Al Ahmad Al-Jaber Al-Sabah.

I took away great memories from this visit.

Today’s Symposium about Empowering Women and Supporting Youth in Development and Global Citizenship clearly underscores the vision of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens.

Our work at the Centre seeks to empower women and youth to strive as global citizens in a peaceful and prosperous world.

This work cannot be done without a dedicated Board that serves as the backbone of our organization and of course our partners, such as the State of Kuwait, who support us and contribute to the resources that we need to be successful.

Leadership, mediation, advocacy, education, and also compassion are cornerstones and mechanisms that we have identified to be most valuable in the implementation of our goals.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

Women represent 50% of the population globally. Nevertheless, the history of civilization is coined by the discrimination of women in various cultures and eras.

Women’s rights have been infringed and the burdens of life have been lying much heavier on women’s shoulders than on men’s.

In the 18th century, during the period of Enlightenment, Europe finally started to have serious discussions about women’s rights and equality.

The idea of universal fundamental and human rights based on human dignity and to be granted regardless of origin, race, sex or religion etc. was introduced to politics and incorporated in the goals of progressive movements and in the texts of modern constitutions.

Documents of the French Revolution and the Declaration of Independence of the United States of America did pioneer work in that regard.

The 20th century was characterized by movements towards the political equality of human beings.

In 1918 and 1919 Germany, Austria and other European countries introduced women’s active and passive right to vote.

In the aftermath of the Second World War, the Human Rights Declaration of the United Nations was passed in 1948 and the European Human Rights Convention followed five years later in 1953.

In the last 50 years the question of equal rights for women and men is less a legal question, but a question of practice and reality.

More and more legal regulations in politics, economy and society seek to decrease the gap between theoretical equality and practical discrimination of women.

A central initiative for that purpose are the Sustainable Development Goals, especially with Goal 5 for Gender Equality.

Global initiatives against the discrimination of women and for women’s empowerment bring people together to raise awareness.

Ladies and Gentlemen,

History shows that we have come a long way. We achieved a lot but there remains a lot that is to be done.

It is estimated that an alarming 1 in 3 women globally will suffer from violence during their lifetime. Violence against women continues to persist and to pose an extreme obstacle to their ability to live in dignity and to their general well-being.

In the political sphere, female heads of states or heads of government are somewhat present but continue to be a very rare minority.

We need more women in parliaments and as political leaders because politics concerns women as much as it concerns men.

To achieve full gender equality in our societies, politics must serve as an example: women belong in leadership positions because we cannot afford to forget the skills and competencies of the female half of our populations.

The economy also demonstrates various aspects in which women are disadvantaged.

In Europe, for instance, women’s salaries are up to one third less than men’s salaries. This must be adjusted and rectified. Fairness and equality mean that women’s work is valued just as much as men’s work.

Europe has made major progress in the field of education.

In the 50s, while I was studying, the percentage of female students was 20%. Then, in the 80s, when I served as the Austrian Minister for Science and Research, more than a third of all students were female.

Today, in Austria, women make up over 50% of all students and this also goes for many other European States.

Men have a clear advantage over women when it comes to university professor positions, showing the obstacles that women face to access leadership positions.

Women’s empowerment must also be regarded as a global issue and put into the bigger picture. It is a key to peace, to eliminating all forms of violence, and to enable families, communities, and nations to thrive

Today, it is particularly interesting to us that we shed light on the advancement of women’s empowerment in the State of Kuwait.

Preparing for this visit, I learned that when it comes to women’s empowerment in the region of the Gulf states and even the whole Middle East, Kuwait has an indeed pioneering role.

Women in Kuwait are amongst the most emancipated in the whole region.

Especially the last 50 years brought significant change for women in Kuwait. Women’s political rights are increasingly respected, giving us hope that we are on the right path.

The General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning and Development of Kuwait is the entity in charge of the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals and thus, also of Goal Number 5.

Under the directorship of Khaled A. Mahdi, the Secretariat has been keen on implementing the Global Goals.

Today’s Symposium on Empowering Women and Supporting Youth in Development and Global Citizenship reflects this commendable ambition and gives us the chance to discuss the steps that have been done already to make this world a more peaceful and prosperous place for all.

Thanks to you and your Secretariat, experts from around the world are gathered here today to exchange ideas and concrete action plans to implement the SDGs and promote the concept of Global Citizenship.

My deep appreciation also goes to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs with Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs of the State of Kuwait H.E. Sheikh Sabah Al Khaled Al Ahmad Al Sabah who are generously hosting today’s third Board Meeting of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens.

Our good friend, his Excellency Ambassador Sadiq Marafi has been a committed and generous Board member of the Ban Ki-moon Centre right from the very beginning and is a great partner for all initiatives to foster women’s empowerment. We are very grateful for your support.

We are looking forward to intensifying our work with Kuwait and in particular with the General Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Planning and Development and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Kuwait and to identifying further opportunities for cooperation.

Let us unite our efforts to reach the great and important goal, namely equal rights and chances for men and women globally in our present world.

Thank you very much.

 

Russian students from the Eurasian Club System visit BKMC

A group of Russian students from the Eurasian Club System (ECS) with the club’s President and CEO Marat Shafigullin visited the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens (BKMC) on January 21st, 2018. BKMC CEO Monika Froehler and Associate Julia Zimmerman briefed the students on the Centre’s work and missions. Specializing in politics and economics, the students showed interest in how to advance the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as global citizens.

The ECS is an organization that aims to facilitate international cooperation for and by youth. Learn more: http://ecseducation.ru

(The SDG signs provided by Stadt Wien)

Ban Ki-moon Centre Participates in Event on the SDGs Featuring Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden

This week, the Ban Ki-moon Centre featured at an event entitled, “The 2030 Agenda – From Global Goals to Local Implementation” hosted by the Swedish Embassy in Vienna. BKMC CEO Monika Froehler moderated the event and led a discussion on the SDGs and local implementation in Austria as well as around the world.

The event began with welcoming remarks from H.E. Ambassador Mikaela Kumlin Granit of the Swedish Embassy followed by a powerful opening statement by Her Royal Highness Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden that set the stage for the discussion that followed. Her H.R.H Princess Victoria said:

“The implementation of the 2030 Agenda is a high priority for the Swedish government, but also for me personally. As advocate of the Global Goals for Sustainable Development, I am delighted to see the commitment with which Austria is working to implement the Agenda. Progress is indeed being made, but now we need to step up the pace.”

Following the opening statement, Foreign Minister Miroslav Lajčák of Slovakia, who is also the former President of the United Nations General Assembly, delivered a keynote in which he stressed the importance of empowering youth and women. He stated:

“Half of this planet are people under 30, and half of this planet are women,” and “our youth are not the future generation; they are here now, and we need to listen to them now.”

Minister Lajčák also thanked the Swedish government for its support of the implementation of  SDG 14, “Life Below Water.”

After the keynote, a panel discussion was moderated by BKMC CEO Monika Froehler, featuring DG Li Yong of United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), Director-General Désirée Schweitzer of the Department for Development Cooperation at the Austrian Foreign Ministry, VP Ulrike Rabmer-Koller of the Austrian Economic Chambers and Director Monika Langthaler of the R20 Austrian World Summit. Experts from Global ResponsibilitySustainable Energy for All, and the IKEA Foundation also shared their expert insights.

Overall, the event emphasized the need for more advocacy, finance, and innovation to achieve implementation of the SDGs and further global collaboration to reach the most marginalized communities. During the Q&A session, the “Youth SDG Advocates” provided by the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens asked questions about the role that the international community should play in advancing the SDGs and how youth can be engaged and represented.

Check out the full video of the event below!

Gepostet von Schwedische Botschaft Wien – Embassy of Sweden Vienna am Mittwoch, 28. November 2018

 

CEO Monika Froehler meets with IOC Director General Christophe De Kepper

Director General Christophe De Kepper of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), who is also a Board member of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens, welcomed CEO Monika Froehler in Lausanne, Switzerland on November 19th, 2018. During the meeting, further collaboration was discussed while exchanging updates on the work of BKMC and the IOC that includes the IOC Executive Board meeting and the Olympism in Action Forum held in Buenos Aires and the launch of the “Sport for Protection Toolkit.”

The “Sport for Protection Toolkit: Programming with Young People in Forced Displacement Settings” was launched during the Olympism in Action Forum in Buenos Aires, Argentina on October 5th, 2018. The toolkit was created by the IOC, UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, and Terre des hommes to be used by the Olympic Refugee Foundation to guide organizations and stakeholders to better understand and implement effective sport for protection programming on site.

The IOC established the Olympic Refugee Foundation in 2017 to “reaffirm the commitment to supporting the protection and empowerment of vulnerable displaced people through sport and through the creation of safe spaces,” said the IOC Preisdent Thomas Bach. He added that the “recent announcement of the Refugee Olympic Team for Tokyo 2020 will again put the spotlight on the continuing global refugee crisis and the role sport can have in protecting vulnerable youth around the world.”

Young people make up the majority of the estimated 68.5 million refugees and internally displaced persons worldwide, often living in precarious conditions. Sport is a powerful driver for social change, uniting people, promoting a culture of peace and fostering youth development, education and social integration.

Source: https://www.olympic.org/…/projects-for-young-people-affecte…

Co-chairman Ban Ki-moon Joins the Advisory Board of the Netpreneur Prize to Support African Entrepreneurs

Jack Ma, the founder and the executive chairman of Alibaba Group, established Jack Ma Foundation Netpreneur Prize to support businesses in digital economy by funding entrepreneurs in Africa. The prize will focus on internet-led businesses that help advance technology and innovation in Africa. The entrepreneurs will get a million USD per year for 10 years through competitions.

The Ban Ki-moon Centre’s Co-chairman Ban Ki-moon was named to the advisory board of the Netpreneur Prize. Ban expressed his excitement to join the advisory board through a video message and said,

“we aim to support African entrepreneurs to build a more inclusive and prosperous Africa and dramatically shape the future prospects of the continent for the better.”

“All young Africans should seize the opportunity to aim high,” Ban urged to the African youth, especially women, “put your best foot forward and I look forward to your application to the African Netpreneur Prize.” Ban sees that the empowerment of youth and women and the development of the global digital economy in Africa will make the continent become the leader of the next century.

For more information: http://netpreneur.africa/
Photo & Source: https://www.alizila.com/jack-ma-10-million-african-entrepreneurs-prize/

Ban Ki-moon Centre Hosts the Second Breakfast Hub for Youth-led and Youth-focused Organizations

Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens invited young leaders and representatives from varied organizations that work with and for youth and their empowerment. To achieve the goals as a global citizen the participants shared their ideas on how they are connected to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the UN Agenda 2030.

The two keynote guest speakers were Billy Batware from the UNODC, who is Co-founder of Regional Academy on United Nations (RAUN), United for Education and Sustainable Futures (UESF), Youth Education Ambassadors (YEA), and Forum for Young Internationalists (FYI), and Katarina Eric, who is President of AIESEC in Austria.

“As you know, global citizenship requires strong networks, partnerships,” said Batware. He emphasized, “during this network event, probably, get to know others and do something together”

and ended his speech with a quote from Ban Ki-moon:

“Be a global citizen. Act with passion and compassion. Help us make this world safer and more sustainable today and for the generations that will follow us. That is our moral responsibility.”

Katarina said she strongly believes that “in order to create a better future, we need to unlock potential in youth.” She said, “a whole point of activating youth is actually creating a change agent” and that being a global citizen for her is “actually believing that you can make a change.”

The participants actively engaged in networking and workshop session by discussing what needs to be improved in the field of youth empowerment to achieve global goals. For one-on-one interviews that the Centre conducted, each of them picked their favorite SDG and explained what they have done and what they will do as a global citizen in order to achieve the goal.

The participants’ organizations are:

AIESEC in Austria, CISV Austria, Erasmus Mundus Global Studies MA Dual Degree Program (EMGS), European Youth Parliament Austria, Interact Club Austria, International Anti-Corruption Academy (IACA), Regional Academy on the United Nations (RAUN), Students Impact Initiative, Umweltbundesamt, Civil Society Team of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), WWF Generation Earth, and HeForShe in Graz/Vienna.

Ban Ki-moon Speaks about the Importance of Youth Leadership for Sustainable Development

As the Honororay Chair of the IGEE, Ban Ki-moon gave a speech about the “Importance of the Youth Leadership for Sustainable Development” at Yonsei University Wonju campus. The lecture was given on the occasion of the 40th anniversary of the campus’ founding, and about 700 students and general public attended the lecture. Among the attendees, there were foreign students from developing countries, who were selected for the KOICA’s master’s scholarship program to study at Yonsei University.

With focus on the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the UN as well as visions of global citizenship, Ban’s words inspired aspiring leaders and youth to actively engage themselves to be part of making changes for co-development of global village. Ban emphasized on the need of youth leadership in rapid growth of the world and encouraged the young generation to grow as talented global citizens that contribute to the world’s peace and prosperity of all mankind.

Photo: Yonsei University Wonju Campus

UN Youth Envoy on Youth Empowerment in the Field of Peace and Security

Last week, Ms. Jayathma Wickramanayake, the Envoy of the Secretary-General on Youth, along with two other young female speakers, Sofia Pierre-Antoine and Kessy Ekomo-Soignet, delivered inspiring speeches at the UN Security Council (UNSC) on youth empowerment in the field of peace and security. Ms. Wickramanayake emphasized how young people, especially young women are engaging themselves in active movement to lead changes in the field.

The UNSC announced the resolution 2250 which was the first international policy framework to recognize young people’s roles in conflict prevention and resolution, and peace building in 2015. In accordance with the UNSCR 2250, a Youth4Peace community has been putting power of young men and women together to promote and maintain international peace and security.

As three years have passed now, she points out there are still existing issues of “the growing mistrust from young generations towards former political institutions” and “the exclusion of young people from political, civic, and economic life.” In attempts to solve these issues, the youth envoy strongly asked the UN Security Council to broaden opportunities for young people to participate and contribute in the matter while at the same time working on reducing the mistrust between the youth, their governments, and the multilateral system.

She made three suggestions:

  1. Support, recognize, fund, scale up, and protect the peacebuilding of young people.
  2. Prioritize political participation for young people to be fully engaged.
  3. Partner to continue efforts and promote the youth’s activities.

Watch Ms. Jayathma Wickramanayake’s speech at the UNSC 2018 here.

Source: https://www.youth4peace.info
Photo: UN Photo by Mark Garten

Ban Ki-moon Meets the Secretary General of the ASEAN-Korea Centre

The Co-chairman of the Ban Ki-moon Centre for Global Citizens, former UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon met the Secretary General of the ASEAN-Korea Centre Lee Hyuk on April 30th.

Mr. Ban Ki-moon congratulated the 4th Secretary General of the ASEAN-Korea Centre on his inauguration that took place on April 16th. Previously, Mr. Lee has served as the Ambassador at the Korean Embassies in the Philippines and Vietnam.

ASEAN-Korea Centre was established with aims to enlarge trades, promote investments, enhance cooperation on culture and tourism, and to activate human exchanges between Korea and the ASEAN countries. ASEAN consists of Brunei, Cambodia, Indonesia, Laos, Malaysia, Myanmar, the Philippines, Thailand, Singapore, and Vietnam.

Mr. Ban also encouraged the ASEAN-Korea Centre to make continuous efforts to build a stronger, sustainable partnership between the ASEAN countries and Korea.

The ASEAN-Korea Centre is currently accepting applicants for the 2018 ASEAN-Korea Youth Network Workshop that will be held in two places, Seoul and Manila, on July 2nd-12th. The deadline for the application submission is May 24th.

Source: https://www.aseankorea.org/eng/Activities/activities_view.asp?pageNum=20&page=1&boa_num=12792&boa_gubun=2&pageReturn=Activities&boa_cnt=49&S_YEAR=&S_MONTH=&S_GUBUN=0&rownum=1
Source: http://www.aseankorea.org/eng/Activities/Activities_view.asp?page=1&boa_num=12789&boa_gubun=6&pageReturn=Activities&boa_cnt=0&S_YEAR=&S_MONTH=&S_GUBUN=0&rownum=1
Photo: ASEAN-Korea Centre