health

[postponed] 21st session, Intergovernmental Working Group on the Right to Development

Announcement to civil society partners & interested participants:

The twenty-first session of the Intergovernmental Working Group on the Right to Development, planned to take place from 2 to 6 November 2020, is postponed to 3-7 May 2021, Ariana 1, Palais des Nations, Geneva, due to the current circumstances arising from the COVID-19 pandemic.

Organized by the NGO Liaison Unit, Political Affairs and Partnerships Section
Office of the Director-General, United Nations Office at Geneva, Palais des Nations, unog.ngo@un.org

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org.

Better City, Better Life: Valuing our Communities and Cities

UN75 Dialogue in observance of World Cities Day

Better City, Better Life: Valuing our Communities & Cities

Friday, October 30, 2020 3:00 PM – 5:45 PM EST

Register here: https://us02web.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_lDz6oNdoQ82hUaJktGVpuw

Hosted by Permanent Mission of Slovakia and the Permanent Mission of Germany to the UN, NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY and UN-Habitat Co-sponsored by UN2020, NGO Major Group Urban Cluster, SDG Impact Awards Community, COVIDxNOW, General Assembly of Partners, Humanitarian Focus Foundation, EBW Foundation, Youth for a Better World/MMUN/YIF, Global Family, Soroptimist International, Consortium for Sustainable Urbanization, CoNGO & UNA-USA Council Organizations.

Our UN75 Dialogue in observance of World Cities Day: “Better City, Better Life: Valuing our Communities and Cities” will address the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on our communities and cities while strengthening our resilience to build back better. The World Urban Forum – WUF10 and the UN Economist Network for the UN 75th Anniversary: Shaping the Trends of Our Time Report showed us the megatrends which shape our world. The present report focuses on five of these megatrends: climate change; demographic shifts, particularly population ageing; urbanization; the emergence of digital technologies and inequalities. While many are utilizing innovative communication platforms that allow for better engagement to strengthen the resilience of their communities and cities, through the pandemic, others without access are falling further behind. It is vitally important that we continue our focus on the SDGs and the UN2030 SD Agenda to build partnerships with Member States, UN-Habitat, national and local authorities as well as stakeholders from civil society and the private sector in order to be better prepared to achieve the inclusive, safe, resilient and healthier future we want with the UN we need – to “Leave No One Behind.”

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY, please visit ngocsd-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-Vienna, please visit ngocsdvienna.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Social Development, please visit ngosocdev.org.

Doctrine of Discovery: Dismantling the Church’s Authorization of Supremacy

In 1452, Pope Nicholas V issued Dum Diversas, a Papal Bull (reaffirmed by subsequent popes) which came to be known as the Doctrine of Discovery. This gave church authorization to the global movement of European conquest and colonization, which decimated the Native populations in the Americas. While many countries in Africa and Asia saw significant suffering, Sri Lanka’s colonial exploitation lasted 453 years, one of the longest in history.

European colonialism may have formally ended, but its supremacist mindset has captured us. How shall we dismantle it?

In our final October session, Thursdays with OMNIA will explore this critical question for our time. Please plan to join our global Zoom conversation next Thursday, October  29th at 2:00 p.m. GMT  (7:00 a.m. in California, 9:00 a.m. in Chicago, 3:00 p.m. in Nigeria, 7:30 p.m. in Sri Lanka, 8:00 p.m. in Bangladesh.) Please double check your time zone.

We invite your participation and engagement. The conversation will be initiated by two experts on the subject, who are grounded in contextual realities:

  • Dr. George “Tink” Tinkeris the Emeritus Professor of American Indian Cultures and Religious Traditions at Iliff School of Theology, Denver, Colorado. He is a member of the wazhazhe, Osage Nation. Dr. Tinker is a renowned expert on Native American history, culture and spirituality. He is the author of many books including, American Indian Liberation: A Theology of Sovereignty. (2008)
  • Dr. Darshi Thoradeniya is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of History, at the University of Colombo, Sri Lanka. She received her Ph.D. in history at the University of Warwick in the UK specializing in the History of Medicine and gender issues. She has published many articles particularly in the area of reproductive rights. The winner of many awards and grants, her research and teaching includes colonialism.

Register here!

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the Decolonization Alliance, please email President Bautista at lbautista@umcjustice.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, please visit facebook.com/NGOCoRIP.

COVID-19 Response & Recovery Efforts in the Global South

On the occasion of the launch of Southern Voice’s COVID-19 Digital Knowledge Hub, we are convening a conversation focused on COVID-19 responses and recovery, as seen from the Global South. We will also take the opportunity to rally experts from the global community, particularly from New York and Geneva.

Register here: https://unfoundation.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_J8M-KESHRsG3Mc8eIMsIDw?mc_cid=c522e0c192&mc_eid=5a0d18791c

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Ageing-Geneva, please visit ageingcommitteegeneva.org.

UN Day 2020: An Inclusive Dialogue on the UN We Need

To mark the occasion of UN Day, we invite you to join #UN75 and United Cities and Local Governments for United Nations Day 2020: An inclusive dialogue on the UN We Need on Tuesday, October 27 at 10AM ET. This panel event will bring together different stakeholders to discuss the UN75 findings and how best to take them forward at the local, national and global level.

Register here! 

The event will be live-streamed in English, French and Spanish on the UCLG YouTube. It will also feature analysis of the UN75 results by Edelman Intelligence and the Pew Research Center, followed by:

Introductory remarks by:
Emilia Saiz, Secretary-General, United Cities and Local Government
H.E. Volkan Bozkir, President of the 75th Session of the UN General Assembly
Fabrizio Hochschild, Under-Secretary-General and Special Adviser on Preparations for the Commemoration of the UN’s 75th Anniversary

Speakers:
Ada Colau, Special Envoy to the UN, United Cities and Local Government, Mayor of Barcelona
John Frank, Vice President, UN Affairs
Vanessa Nakate, Founder, Fridays for Future Uganda
Anne Nuorgam, Chair, UN Permanent Forum on Indigenous Issues
Mary Robinson, Chair, The Elders

Background:
In 2020, the United Nations turned 75 and launched an ambitious effort to crowdsource priorities and solutions to global challenges – from COVID-19 to the climate crisis. Over one million people from all countries have taken part, sharing their hopes and fears for the future and expectations of international cooperation, and the UN in particular. The result was a strong call for access to basic services and action to tackle inequalities to be prioritised in pandemic recovery plans; for urgent action on climate change and environmental protection; and for more – and more effective – global cooperation. The report can be viewed here.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on CoNGO and the commemoration f the 75th anniversary of the UN, visit its website.

#75Words4Disarmament Congratulatory Event

#75Words4Disarmament Congratulatory Event by the #Youth4Disarmament Initiative
On Friday 23 October, watch the event live here: Join the Webex Event

If prompted, enter the following info:
Event number: 173 015 6470
Event password: WDYC2020

Background: In commemoration of the seventy-fifth anniversary of the establishment of the United Nations, the UN Office for Disarmament Affairs held the “#75Words4Disarmament Youth Challenge”, which was launched on 12 August, the International Youth Day, and was closed on 26 September, the International Day for the Total Elimination of Nuclear Weapons.

The “#75Words4Disarmament Youth Challenge” invited young people around the world to express what disarmament means to them and their communities in 75 words. The challenge provided an opportunity to think about disarmament not as an abstract concept, but as a practical means to help prevent armed conflict and promote peace and security.

The challenge was open to young people between the ages of 13 and 29, with three age groups: 13 to 18 years (middle and high school), 19 to 24 years (college and graduate school) and 25 to 29 years (early career professionals). The five winners from each group were selected by the panel of judges and will be announced at the congratulatory event at 9 a.m. (EDT) on Monday, 26 October, marking the Disarmament Week.

At the event, the winners will be announced by the High Representative for Disarmament Affairs and the young people’s concerns and cares for disarmament and ways for further youth engagement will be shared.

Our distinguished speakers:

Ms. Izumi Nakamitsu, United Nations Under-Secretary-General and High Representative for Disarmament Affairs
H.E. Mr. CHO Hyun, Ambassador and Permanent Representative of the Republic of Korea to the UN
Ms. Isa Begemann, UN Youth Champion for Disarmament
First Prize Winners

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Children’s Rights, please email the co-chair at marjones@nyc.rr.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Disarmament, Peace, and Security, please visit ngocdps.wordpress.com.

[last day to RSVP] Technological and Science-based Solutions to the COVID-19 Challenge

“Technological and Science-based Solutions to the COVID-19 Challenge”

Part of the UN DESA Global Policy Dialogue Series 

Thursday, 29 October 2020
10-11:30 a.m. EDT

Please join UN DESA on 29 October for a conversation with global leaders in science and technology that will assess the science-based policies and innovations that have developed during the pandemic, identifying good practices as well as areas where work is still needed. The event will feature a broad panel discussion with experts, followed by regional breakout sessions led by UN DESA (English) and the UN Economic and Social Commission for Western Asia (Arabic). The event will discuss these questions, among others:

  • What are concrete examples of innovations that have helped people or institutions deal with the effects of COVID-19?
  • How can the international community help to ensure that research and innovations related to COVID-19 are accessible to all?
  • What needs to be done to better engage society, counter misinformation and overcome apathy towards science in policy-making?

Register here by 27 October 2020: bit.ly/tech29oct

More information: bit.ly/hlab2020

The event is free and open to all, and will be streamed live on UN DESA’s Facebook page.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Education, Learning, and Literacy, please visit facebook.com/NGOCELLatUN. For more information on the NGO Committee on Human Rights, please email the co-chairs at bknotts@uua.org or bobbinassar@gmail.com. 

Safeguarding the Right to Freedom of Religion or Belief and Cultural Rights at a Time of Crisis

Safeguarding the Right to Freedom of Religion or Belief and Cultural Rights at a Time of Crisis

Featuring Dr. Ahmed Shaheed, UN Special Rapporteur on Freedom of Religion or Belief, and Karima Bennoune, Special Rapporteur in the Field of Cultural Rights

Thursday, October 22, 2020, 12:00 – 1:15 Eastern Time

RSVP (include name and affiliation) to unforb@gmail.com – registered attendees will be emailed with link & password just prior to the event

Please join us for a conversation in which Dr. Ahmed Shaheed and Ms. Karima Bennoune will discuss their most recent reports to the UN General Assembly as well as several areas in which they have both engaged in their recent work as UN Special Procedures mandate holders. These include their efforts to encourage States to advance the rights to freedom of religion or belief and cultural rights in ways that are consistent with the principle of the universality of rights; their efforts to promote greater recognition of rights defenders in their respective fields; and their concern about the effect of the COVID-19 pandemic on the essential rights they monitor.

This event is free and open to all. Advance registration is required. For more information about the NGO Committee on Freedom of Religion or Belief, please visit unforb.org.

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the Committee of Religious NGOs at the United Nations, please visit rngos.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Spirituality, Values, and Global Concerns-NY, please visit csvgc-ny.org.

{Webinar} Faith Speaks to UN75

You are cordially invited to participate in the webinar Faith Speaks to UN75, scheduled to take place onWednesday October 21, 2020, from 10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.(New York time) and facilitated via Zoom.

Please register by October 20th via this link: https://us02web.zoom.us/meeting/register/tZwpcu2uqD4uEtWStFEaMfMn1TeZJaAes3vZ.

Concept note

The UN is marking its 75th anniversary at a time of great disruption in the world. The COVID-19 pandemic with severe economic and social impacts creates increased challenges for the UN. Faith-based organizations (FBOs) have a history of inspiring people to act and are often the first responders, and longest sustainers, in times of global crisis. Our communities and partners on the ground ensure that basic needs are met for all people, regardless of religion or belief, in the communities in which we live and serve. We reach out to communities that are often the most vulnerable and are left behind. Faith-based actors fill the service gaps usually without government assistance. FBOs continually engage in projects on the ground that specifically further the objectives of the UN Charter, implement the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), as well as advance other UN mandates that promote the common good.

These long-term commitments to the UN Mission serve to accelerate our constructive partnership in negotiations and reviews of UN frameworks. We must ensure that throughout the UN processes and respective consultations at all levels, FBOs are not only present but also have the opportunity for meaningful engagement earned by protecting fundamental freedoms of assembly, association, worship, and expression.

The continued support and actions of faith-based organizations are essential as we forge ahead to “build back together.” These are also equally essential as we accelerate the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals for all people, especially for those left furthest behind. For, as the Golden Rule states “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” This is a guide for people of all faiths or beliefs. Our core values are largely aligned with the 2030 Agenda. FBOs are well placed to carry innovations and lessons learned across communities and national borders. The UN can benefit from the breadth and depth of faith-based organizations.

We all share a common objective: a future of dignity, prosperity and peace on a healthy planet. This is true regardless of what religion or belief one practices. We need to continue working together through partnerships and strengthened collaboration among faith-based organizations and civil society in general, national governments, the international community, the private sector and other actors.

The panelists and participants in this webinar will discuss the opportunities for creating the space to leverage such partnerships in common cause to build a better world despite the vast challenges we currently face. They will also explore the pathways to make the constructive role of the faith-based organizations in the UN processes more central and impactful, in the context of the UN75 discussion on the future of the UN. Some argue that global leadership in multilateralism is lacking “political will”. In this regard, religious values can inspire people to act, locally, nationally and internationally, at whatever position they are, and deliver results beyond any material consideration.

Panelists:

  • Joop Theunissen, Deputy Chief, Intergovernmental Policy and Review Branch, Office of Intergovernmental Support and Coordination for Sustainable Development, UN DESA
  • Archbishop Gabriele Giordano Caccia, Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations
  • Sr. Sheila Kinsey, FCJM – Executive Co-Secretary, Justice Peace and Integrity of Creation Commission, Union of Superior Generals and International Union of Superior Generals
  • Rev. Protopresbyter Dr. Nicolas Kazarian, Director, Department of Inter-Orthodox, Ecumenical and Interfaith Relations, Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America
  • Saphira Rameshfar, Representative to the UN, Baha’i International Community
  • Rana Yurtsever, Member of Advisory Board, Islamic Society of Midwest
  • Teresa Blumenstein, New York Coordinator, Justice Coalition of Religious,
  • Marvelous (Marvie) L. Misolas, MM, NGO Representative at the UN, Maryknoll Sisters of St. Dominic, Inc.

Moderator: Dr. Despoina Afroditi Milaki, NGO Representative at the UN, International Presentation Association

14 faith-based organizations/sponsors of the webinar: Baha’i International Community, Company of the Daughters of Charity of St. Vincent de Paul, Congregation of the Sisters of St. Joseph of Peace, Fondazione Proclade Internazionale-Onlus, Greek Orthodox Archdiocesan Council, Institute of the Blessed Virgin Mary – Loreto Generalate, International Presentation Association, Islamic Society of Midwest, Justice Coalition of Religious, Maryknoll Office for Global Concerns, Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, School Sisters of Notre Dame, Sisters of Notre Dame de Namur, UNANIMA International

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the Committee of Religious NGOs at the United Nations, please visit rngos.wordpress.com. For more information on the NGO Committee on Spirituality, Values and Global Concerns-New York, please visit csvgc-ny.org.

Older People’s Experiences in Real Life and Data

HelpAge International (in partnership with DESAAARP, Ghana Statistical Services, UNDP, and WHO )

is co-organizing the session “Older People’s Experiences in Real Life and Data” on 21 October 2020 at 10:00AM (New York) at the United Nations World Data Forum.

This session will:

  • Explore information required to understand the impact of the pandemic on the wellbeing and rights of older people
  • Examine systemic barriers to better data on older women and men
  • Identify actions members of the data community can jointly take to improve availability of data on older people for inclusive response and recovery

We look forward to your joining the event! Please register at: https://attendify.co/62RQIWV

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CoNGO Notes: For more information on the NGO Committee on Ageing-Geneva, please visit ageingcommitteegeneva.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Ageing-NY, please visit ngocoa-ny.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Ageing-Vienna, please visit ngoageingvie.org. For more information on the NGO Committee on Intergenerational Solidarity, please email vice-chair Dr. Seperson at susanneseperson@gmail.com. 

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