This conference recap was provided by Dennis K.A. Penu, Director of Programs and Acting COO of Life-Link Ghana.
This year’s United Nations Day was chock-full of excitement for some 160 students at this year’s 14th annual Life-Link Junior High School Model United Nations (JHSMUN) conference. Held in Accra, Ghana, the conference focused on the theme of “Providing Quality Education for Sustainable Development” and was organized as a part of Ghana’s UN Day celebrations in conjunction with the Ghanaian Foreign Ministry and United Nations Office. As with any successful, large-scale conference, participants from across the country spent one day actively engaged in international affairs and negotiations in a competitive and educational manner.
At the colorful opening ceremony, the Foreign Minister sent her well wishes through Mrs. Novisi Abaidoo, Director of Multilateral Relations Bureau. Staying consistent with the theme of the conference, she noted that Ghana’s government was committed to improving education in a safe environment. She emphasized the importance of educational programs like Model UN and thanked Life-Link Ghana for creating such a good platform to develop the Ghanaian Child.
The special messages continued with Wolgang Haas, UN Coordination Specialist and speaker for the UN Resident Coordinator. Thrilled that the UN was making sturdy progress in Ghana, especially in the efforts towards the post-2015 development agenda, he was excited to see that Ghanaian children were joining in the UN’s commemorative activities and playing mock roles as the world’s greatest leaders. The Executive Director of Life-Link Friendship Schools Ghana Mr. Ernest Gyimah-Danquah then on his part announced that the Life-Link Model UN program had expanded extensively since the year 2000 into rural areas and all educational levels. He added that the Life-link Model UN TV shows aimed at partnering stakeholders to produce a well-groomed UN Youth Ambassador for Ghana in the coming year.
Throughout the day, young delegates made speeches and engaged in formal and informal negotiations to finally formulate a resolution that called for improved education funding for less privileged societies in UN member states. The delegates also simulated a Crisis Session on the Security Council which discussed and passed a resolution on a mock Terrorist threat in Nigeria. Princess Agbeka (Cradle Grace School) won the Best Position paper award while Laurin Donkor (North Ridge Lyceum) and Woedem Astutse (St. Paul’s Methodist School) were adjudged the best female and male delegates, respectively. Marcus Garvey Ashiangonor of Star Basic School was adjudged the Overall Best Delegate and was awarded a fully funded trip to the Global Classrooms Middle School Model UN in the USA next year.