The morning of October 26th greeted us with unexpected warmth and sunshine that carried through to the inside of the Boston Harbor Hotel at the UN Day Luncheon where we gathered to celebrate the sixty five years of service the UN has provided to the international community.
Guests were serenaded as they walked into the Wharf Room with traditional Irish tunes from accordion player Dan Gurney, and flutist Jimmy Noonan. The luncheon began with a welcome introduction from UNA-GB President, Richard Golob, followed by Bianca Diaz, a Boston Latin Academy Sophomore who shared her experience with Model UN.
At this year’s luncheon, we had the honor of hosting Ireland’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Ambassador Anne Anderson. Ambassador Anderson’s address, “Our Collective Challenge: Restoring the Authority of the United Nations,” emphasized the collective responsibility of member States and their civil societies have in maintaining and improving the United Nations and its role and relevance in the international community.
Ambassador Anderson said that despite criticism of the UN over recent years, successful gains of the Millennium Development Goals highlighted at September’s Millennium Development Summit, the establishment of UN Women, and the recent elections to the Security Council are all ways that the UN has already begun to reclaim its authority. Although the UN has started to make great strides in Anderson’s opinion, she acknowledged that there is still much more to do, and it will not happen overnight. Her challenge to the audience was to find ways to participate in that change and forward movement of strengthening and rebuilding the UN. The address concluded with a brief question and answer period.
Following the Luncheon, Ambassador Anderson met with local students from Dorchester that are representing Ireland in UNA-GB’s upcoming Fall Middle School Model UN Conference. The students had the unique opportunity to get direct answers about Ireland’s position on migrant workers and the environment before their simulation takes place. It was a once in the lifetime chance for these students, and represents everything we try to uplift and support here at the UNA-GB. In fact, money raised at the Luncheon goes to support the critical global education work of the UNA-GB, with a particular focus on the Model UN program implemented throughout Boston schools, giving opportunities like this to students in and around Boston.
All in all, the Luncheon was a great success!