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  • APPA Intern / Sean Chae

UN Visit Report

I participated in a global related program sponsored by Action for Peace Through Prayer and Aid(APPA, Economic and Social Council Consultative Status Member NGO) on July 11 and visited the UN. I am Sean Chae going to eighth grade and I am currently attending Jericho Middle School.

On July 11, 2019, me and several other youths in middle and high school visited the United Nations Office in New York. One thing I noticed was that they had the flags of each member country outside the building, the organization placed the flags in alphabetical order to avoid any complaints of discrimination. During this visit we were taken on a guided tour where our tour guide showed and explained the origins and history of the UN. We were even allowed to enter the General Assembly Hall which was very large.

The UN is an international organization with the intention to help those in need and protect the member states. Of the 195 countries on Earth, 193 countries are part of the UN. The two countries not in the UN are Vatican City and Palestine. The organization’s six official languages are Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian, and Spanish. During meetings speakers can speak in one of the six languages and their speech will be translators and repeated through headsets in the listener’s preferred language. The six main "organs" of the UN are the General Assembly, the Security Council, the Economic and Social Council, the International Court of Justice, the Secretariat, and the Trusteeship Council. The UN was founded soon after World War 2 in 1945, with 51 original member countries, to prevent similar disasters. The United Nations also concern themselves with environmental issues such as natural disasters, climate change, biodiversity, and eliminate deadly diseases. The UN Charter was created by the first UN member countries back in 1945 as a treaty to ensure that they would not attack each other, and would instead help each greater goals.

The General Assembly is responsible for most of the planning done by the UN. It is stated to be the main deliberative, policymaking, and representative organ of the UN. Most decisions made by this branch of the UN requires two-thirds of the votes of the entire assembly. Each member country gets one vote so that each country gets an equal say in the matter. The Security Council takes care to ensure that there is little to no tension between countries, stop terrorism, prevent wars, and rally troops if a war does occur. The Security Council can also decide to start peace operations to prevent wars. The International Court of Justice is the main judicial organ of the UN. The ICJ will also settle legal disputes between countries and can also give advisory opinions on legal matters of member countries. The one thing that makes the ICJ special is the fact that it is the only main organ of the UN that is not based in New York, it is instead based in the Hague, Netherland. The Trusteeship Council is the organ that manages the land and assets entrusted to the UN. Another purpose of the Trusteeship Council is to make sure that the entrusted assets will be used for a good cause. The Economic and Social Council, also referred to as ECOSOC, dwells over economic, social, and health problems. Such as eliminating a deadly disease, or creating more jobs to support the economy. Finally, the Secretariat basically creates the agenda for the decision making branches of the UN. It may include problems that may need to be solved, places the organization can improve, or threats to a member country. Bang Ki Moon was the 8th secretary general of the UN. The secretary general is stated as the chief administrative officer, the secretary general is able to perform the functions entrusted to him by other organs. Antonio Guterres succeeded him as the next secretary general.

The 17 sustainable development goals of the UN are eliminating poverty, eliminate hunger/malnutrition, promote good health and wellbeing, be able to provide quality education to everyone, create gender equality, provide clean water and a sanitary environment for those without, provide affordable and clean energy, be able to give everyone a job and still have economic growth, improve industry and infrastructure, and innovate, reduce inequalities, create sustainable cities/communities, promote responsible consumption and production, take action on climate change, protect marine life, protect life on land, support peace, justice, and strong institutions, and create partnerships that will help achieve these goals

After my visit to the UN New York Office I learned many things about the United Nations, their purpose, and the history behind the United Nations. It was a very interesting experience and I enjoyed learning about the United Nations and I especially enjoyed being able to see the assembly halls and the New York United Nations building.

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