UNA-USA Mission

We are dedicated to educating, inspiring and mobilizing Americans to support the principles and vital work of the United Nations, strengthening the United Nations system, promoting constructive United States leadership in that system and achieving the goals of the United Nations Charter.

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News

Division Board Meeting Features Haiti

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Tuesday, 13 April 2010 13:45

The Division's Board Meeting of April 12, 2010 featured remarks by Jocelyn McCalla, Senior Adviser to the Special Envoy of Haiti to the United Nations, and David Stillman, Executive Director of the Public-Private Alliance Foundation and a Division Board Member.  

 

Board Features Haiti - April 12, 2010

McCalla's talk focused on the Haiti Donors Conference that took place on March 31 at the United Nations and the financial and managerial arrangements that are being set up.  The 9.9 billion dollars that have been pledged by UN Member States for the first five years reconstruction will be put into a Trust Fund managed by the World Bank, Haiti.  An Interim Commission for Recovery is being set up, with President Clinton as Special Envoy of the UN to Haiti and Prime Minister Jean-Max Bellerive as co-chairs.  The Commission will include Haitians and non-Haitians, with seats for NGOs and for members of the Haitian Diaspora.  An Executive Director will be hired.  The main funds available for reconstruction include (1) the Multi-donors trust fund; (2) the Clinton Bush Haiti Fund, which currently has obtained about $50 million; and (3) funds privately available to non-governmental organizations.  Prominent among NGOs are Oxfam (about $100 million); International Red Cross/ Red Crescent ($300 million); American Red Cross ($770 million); Partners in Health ($125 million).  The president of the InterAction Committee has pledged another $475 million.  

David Stilman spoke principally about his recent trip to Haiti, by road from the Dominican Republic, and about an upcoming workshop the Public-Private Alliance Foundation will hold with partners in Jacmel, Haiti.  The aim of the workshop, which will be held from June 27-29, is to encourage investment and commerce to revitalize Southern Haiti.

The Young Professionals for International Cooperation collected funds for two organizations in Haiti - HELP and Project Seguin, as part of the 2009 Haiti Expedition Project.

See the Image Events Gallery for more photos.  

 

UNA Southern NYS Division Holds Orientation for Volunteers

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Thursday, 18 March 2010 13:44

On March 15, the UNA Southern New York State Division held an orientation/training program for ten new volunteers.  Jeff Laurenti, Mid-Atlantic Regional Board Member and a member of the Princeton-Trenton Chapter, started the program by speaking about the relationship between the United Nations Association of the USA and the United Nations.  Presenters from the Southern NYS Division Board of Directors included  George Garland, Joan A. Levy, Margaret Shannon (Secretary), David Stillman, Jeanne Betsock Stillman (President) and Catherine D. White (Vice President).  Garland and White are also Mid-Atlantic Region representatives to the UNA-USA Council of Chapters and Divisions Steering Committee.

The new volunteers attending were, from New York, Carol Hartland, Gretchen Kail, Danielle Lazarowitz, Visvesh Seshadri & Ashley Tucker, and from New Jersey, Edwin Ambat, Lobna Elberri, Udita Markovich, Virginia Sarmiento, & Anna Taylor.

Click here to see a slideshow of photos.  Thanks to David Stillman for taking the photos.

   

Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference Photos

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Thursday, 18 March 2010 13:00

The Mid Atlantic Regional Conference / Members Day photos are now available in the Events Gallery.  Or click here to see the slideshow.  Many thanks to Arnold Gallardo of the UNA Queens Chapter, who photographed the event.

 

   

In Case You Missed It: "A Year of Crisis: Opportunities for Change," Members Day at the UN

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Saturday, 27 February 2010 20:29

Marcia Brewster, UNA-USA Southern NYS Division Vice President and VP of the UNA Westchester Chapter, prepared the following report on the February 19 conference sponsored by the Southern NYS Division.

An impressive group of experts was on hand to discuss three major crises facing the world over the past year—Afghanistan, the Global Economy, and Nuclear Weapons—at the United Nations on February 19. These were the themes of the three panels at the UNA Mid-Atlantic Regional Conference and 2010 Members’ Day. The conference, entitled ―A Year of Crises: Opportunities for Change -- was organized by co-chairs Jeffrey Laurenti and Catherine White, with George Garland serving as Executive Director. A full Web cast of the proceedings is available at www.tcf.org, the Web site of the Century Foundation.
The 500 plus participants (many of them students) were welcomed by: Jeffrey Laurenti, the Century Foundation; Ramu Damodaran, UN Department of Public Information; Ambassador Byrganym Aitimova, the Vice President of the General Assembly; Tom Miller, President of UNA-USA; and Robert Orr, UN Assistant Secretary-General for Policy Coordination and Strategic Planning.

The first Panel, on ―Afghanistan: From Ramping Up to the Exit Ramp,‖ was moderated by Linda Fasulo, NBC News correspondent at the UN. The excellent panel included: Hassan Abbas, Bernard Schwartz Fellow at the Asia Society; Valentin Gatzinski, Director of the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan; and Jeffrey Laurenti. Much of the discussion centered on the failure of nation building in Afghanistan and the difficult situation in that country. Dr. Abbas suggested some of the elements that would be needed to reconcile all of the factions, the hard core Taliban, war lords, and other local people. Religious deradicalization, a larger education project, regional arrangements, and an active international role will be needed.

The second panel, ―Hitting the Reset Button on the Global Economy,‖ was moderated by Jeffrey Laurenti and featured: Jomo Kwame Sundaram, Assistant Secretary-General for Economic Development; Anita Sharma of the UN Millennium Campaign; and Werner Puschra, UN Office Director of Friedrich-Ebert-Stiftung (Germany). Much of the discussion focused on the unregulated and ad hoc international system for dealing with trade and financial flows. The panel also discussed the Millennium Development Goals, foreign assistance, and globalization. The panelists suggested that a ―Tobin tax‖ on international financial transactions would contribute to financial stability and to meeting the MDGs.

The final panel, on ―Turning Back the Bomb: Hard Cases and Grand Designs,‖ was moderated by Christine Wing of NYU’s Center on International Cooperation. Panelists were: Ambassador Gérard Araud of France; Trita Parsi, President of the National Iranian-American Council; and Randy Rydell, Senior Officer in the UN Office for Disarmament Affairs. Much of the discussion was on Iran’s nuclear program and the upcoming sessions on the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty at the UN in May.

   

Westchester to Celebrate Women's Day

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Tuesday, 23 February 2010 14:23

The United Nations Association of the USA (UNA-USA) – Westchester,  League of Women Voters and Sarah Lawrence College invite you to celebrate International Women’s Day 2010

Equal Rights, Equal Opportunities: Progress for All

Tuesday, March 9, 2010, 6:30 – 8:00 pm

Sarah Lawrence College, Esther Raushenbush Library, 2nd fl.. Bronxville, NY

Featuring:
Nicola Armacost Managing Director and Co-Founder
Arc Finance, Ltd.
(microfinance, energy, water and sanitation)

Urjasi Rudra
Coordinator, ‘Say NO’ – UNiTE
Campaign to End Violence Against Women, UN Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM), New York

Moderated by: Marcia Brewster, Vice-President, UNA-Westchester, former Senior Officer for Water Resources, UN Dept of Economic and Social Affairs.

International Women’s Day 2010 focuses on opportunities that can lead to gender equality and the empowerment of women, particularly in developing countries. Our speakers will address the work the United Nations is doing to end violence against women, and opportunities for economic empowerment through establishing small businesses with the help of microfinance. Our main speakers bring to the program a vast amount of experience with improving the conditions of marginalized women throughout the world. The panel discussion will be followed by a question and answer period.
Refreshments will be served following the program.

Information: Contact Doris Benson at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , (914) 961-6554
*Directions: Take Cross County Parkway East to exit 5, Kimball Ave. Turn left on Kimball and go north to the 2nd light at the entrance to the college (Glen Washington Rd.). Turn right and an immediate right into the parking lot. The Library is a contemporary light brick building on the right as you exit the parking lot. The event will take place on the second floor. For train or other transport, visit: http://www.slc.edu/about/visit/index.html.

   

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