|Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York|
Committee on NGOs
7th & 8th Meetings (AM & PM)
TEN CIVIL SOCIETY ORGANIZATIONS APPROVED BY NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS
COMMITTEE FOR CONSULTATIVE STATUS WITH ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COUNCIL
Leaves 31 Applications Pending
The Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations today continued its consideration of new applications from national and international civil society groups seeking consultative status with the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and began its consideration of previously deferred applications, approving 10 for special status and leaving pending 31 more.
Non-governmental organizations (NGOs) from around the world were approved for status, working to address such concerns as the health of homeless teenage girls; child abandonment and discrimination; the needs of refugees, asylum seekers and displaced persons; water-related health threats in Africa; and keeping alive the memory of the First World War.
During the interactive segment this afternoon with a representative of Congregation of Our Lady of Mount Carmel (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.3), written confirmation of the name of the NGO -- Carmelite NGO -- was distributed in the room, following which the Committee approved the international organization for special consultative status with ECOSOC. The NGO states as its aim the creation of a more peaceful, just and loving world as it ministers to the needs of God’s people.
A United States-based national organization, Africa Action (document E/C.2/2006/R.2/Add.18), self-described as the oldest organization in the United States working on African affairs (since 1953), withdrew its candidacy.
Among those applications left pending until receipt of a written reply to the Committee’s questions was that of the United States-based Farleigh Dickinson University, after extensive interaction late today with its representative, focused mainly on whether the applicant was an institution of higher learning solely or also an NGO, and whether granting status to the entity would open the way to a flood of academic applicants. The speaker explained that Farleigh Dickinson was applying as an international education NGO, which already enjoyed accreditation with the United Nations Department of Public Information.
Hers was a full-fledged university, but it was also functioning as a non-governmental education organization, and that was how it interacted with the United Nations, she added. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon had addressed the University last September and had emphasized the vital importance for institutions of higher learning to support the United Nations in meeting the multiple challenges it faced. Her NGO took the request that it serve as a portal and a broker for other academic institutions very seriously, stepping down from their “ivory tower” and bringing to the United Nations their resources and expertise.
Written replies to previous questions by the Committee had been received by Students for Sensible Drug Policy (document E/C.2/2007/R.2/Add.5), a United States-based international organization committed to providing education on harms caused by the “War on Drugs” and to involving youth in promoting an open, honest, and rational discussion of alternative solutions to the United States drug problems.
Nevertheless, the Committee deferred the application again, owing to questions by Egypt’s member, which included a request to the NGO to elaborate on its views of non-violent criminal penalties for drug traders and whether or not their actions should be considered offences punishable by law.
Also deferred was the application from the European Foundation for Democracy (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.8), a Belgium-based NGO aimed at promoting universal human rights, freedom of conscience, individual liberty and pluralism of peaceful ideas worldwide. China’s representative asked about the relationship between the organization and the Government. A Committee member from Pakistan questioned the group’s views on Islamophobia in Europe. Following up a reference in the application, he also asked which United Nations resolutions it had promoted.
The application from FATIMA Women’s Network (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.12) was also deferred, owing to questions about, among other things, its registration as a company limited by guarantee. The United Kingdom’s representative explained that that was not at all unusual in her country. That national organization is based in the United Kingdom and seeks to support the empowerment of women and their families, particularly from diverse and disadvantaged communities. Details were also sought about funding for the NGO’s advocacy work with migrant women, particularly funding sources outside the United Kingdom.
Also among the deferred candidates was J. W. Bethany, Inc., or The Smile of a Child (SOAC) (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.6), a United States-based international organization helping to eliminate poverty and increase the quality of life for children. Questions were raised by Pakistan’s representative, who wanted to know more about the NGOs stated mission to improve quality of life around the world. In summarizing its aims and purposes, the organization had stated that its prime directive had always been religious education, but that it was transforming its religious team’s activities. He asked for elaboration on what kind of religious message it was imparting and the make-up of its religious team.
Another United States-based NGO was also deferred, as the delegate of Pakistan also had some questions about Girls Learn International (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.11). That global organization is designed to bring American middle and high school students into the global partnership to promote access to quality education for all girls by pairing American school-based Chapters and Partner Classrooms in countries where girls have been traditionally denied access to education. Specifically, the speaker asked whether it was involved in curriculum development. He also sought more details about its activities overall.
When the application was left pending of Lesbenorganisation Schweiz (LOS) (document E/C.2/2009/R.2), a national organization permanently headquartered in Bern, Switzerland, which advocates for equality of the lesbian lifestyle in society, the observer for Switzerland -- stressing first his understanding that no response was required from a Member State about an NGO before the Committee took up its application -- said the group, headquartered in Bern since 1991, had a relationship with the Swiss Federal Foreign Ministry, but its budget emanated exclusively from the contributions of its members. He felt the NGO could make a useful contribution to the work of the Human Rights Council in Geneva and to ECOSOC here in New York and in Geneva. A representative of the NGO would be available to the Committee in New York next week for any questions, he offered.
The Committee also deferred a new application from Jananeethi -- A People’s Initiative for Human Rights (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.19), a national organization based in Kerala, India, whose key goal is to make justice tangible for the poor and marginalized. The application had mentioned some affiliated organizations, and Pakistan’s speaker sought more information about those, specifically the extent and affiliation of the NGO with academic circles, think tanks and other policy-making institutes. The group had also mentioned providing support to victims of sexual minorities, and he asked how it defined them. Also, the NGO’s website contained comments on the situation in the region, and he asked whether it was involved in a larger framework than indicated in its aim.
Also granted special consultative status were:
Fondazione Opera Compana dei Caduti (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.19), an international organization headquartered in Robereto, Italy, that aims at the maintenance of the monumental Bell “Maria Dolens”, which was built by the melting of the bronze cannons offered by the countries involved in the First World War and keep the memory of the horrible events in which many people were killed in the cruelty of war;
Gherush92: Committee for Human Rights (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.11), a national organization in Rome aimed at, among other things, promoting and undertaking scientific and technological research, formulating new strategies for cooperation with developing countries and producing publications and projects in the fields of human rights and poverty and related issues, such as racism, conflict resolution, rights of indigenous people, women, children, valorisation of local resources and sustainable development;
Justice for Girls Outreach Society (JFG) (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.10), a national organization based in Vancouver, Canada, seeking to promote the health and well-being of low-income and homeless teenage girls, by working for social justice based on the feminist belief that young women in poverty are the experts of their own experience;
Open City International Foundation (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.18), a United States-based international organization representing a network of individuals, NGOs, companies and public institutions complying with the Open City vision, mission and values to, among other things, contribute and act together to prevent and alleviate hunger, child abandonment and discrimination;
Refugee Council of Australia (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.1), a national organization based in New South Wales, Australia, whose key objectives are to, among other things, present the case on matters relating to refugees, asylum seekers and displaced persons as strongly as possible, wherever appropriate, at the local, regional and international levels, and increase public awareness and media sensitivity towards refugee needs;
Safe Water African Community Initiative (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.3), a Nigerian-based national organization aimed at seeing every African build up family without water-borne illness, such as diarrhoea, dysentery, filariasis, schistosomiasis, cholera and guinea worm, leading to economic and social gain through its interventions, providing solution to water-related health threats through prevention and cure, and, worst case scenario, intervening during disasters and manmade chaos;
Vida y Familia de Guadalajara (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.2), a national organization headquartered in Mexico with the objective of supporting any and all pregnant women who face a lack of protection, providing them with integral free attention, promoting the respect and recognition of their human rights, gender equity and their full development;
Women for Women International (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.20), an international organization based in Washington, D.C., providing women survivors of war, civil strife and other conflicts with the tools and resources to move from crisis and poverty to stability and self-sufficiency, thereby promoting viable civil societies; and
World Family of Radio Maria (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.7), an international organization based in Casciago, Italy, aimed at promoting education and training for professional technical profiles in media, and promoting and valorising local cultures for the improvement of social relations and the enrichment of human resources and, among other things, to create higher standards of living, new economic conditions and social progress.
Other organizations deferred or left pending, in some cases to be revisited before the conclusion of this session next Wednesday, were:
Institute of Hazrat Mohammad (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.2), a national organization based in Bangladesh, which emphasizes peace and love for all Allah’s creations, and education through implementation of different programmes that focus on literacy, poverty alleviation, research, basic rights and development of the individual and the community, regardless of religious denominations;
Institute of Road Traffic Education (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.10), an international organization based in New Delhi, India, aimed at catalysing development of infrastructure in the fields of traffic engineering, traffic enforcement, collision investigation and analysis, driver training and testing systems, public participation in road safety management and road safety education in India and other developing countries;
International Game Fish Association (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.4), an international United States-based organization committed to the global conservation of game fish and the promotion of responsible, ethical angling practices through science, education, rule making and record keeping;
Missions 3G-Gauri (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.6), an international organization based in New Delhi, which seeks to create a “just attitude” and reach those segments of society that, for some reason, remain isolated and scattered geographically, or economically deprived and exploited, and to, among other things, create a green environment to reduce global warming and to create a self-reliant society for dignified survival;
New World Hope Organization (NWHO) (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.11), an international organization based in Wah Cantt, Pakistan, aimed at creating awareness of education among the deprived communities to develop respectable and better living standards for a bright future;
Pew Charitable Trusts (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.16), a United States-based international organization, which combined science, policy, campaign and advocacy expertise to reduce and cope and severity of three major global environment problems: dramatic changes to the Earth’s climate; the erosion of large wilderness ecosystems; and the destruction of the world’s oceans;
Reality of Aid Network (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.16), an international organization headquartered in Quezon City, Philippines, aimed at contributing to more effective strategies to eliminate poverty, based on principles of solidarity and equity, through analysis of international aid and development cooperation, and lobbying for changes in North-South systemic relationships and in aid practices;
Swami Vivekanand Samaj Seva Samsthe (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.15), a national organization based in Karnatake State, India, with the main objective of promoting participation in development projects and conducting women development programmes in project areas. The NGO also seeks to, among other things, conduct awareness and capacity-building programmes for rural women on their rights, legal status and child development activities;
Share The World’s Resources (STWR) (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.19), an international organization based in the United Kingdom with the objectives of, among others, advancing education about why and how sharing the world’s resources can end poverty and create a sustainable economy, and campaigning for Governments to reform the world economy and to share those resources essential for securing basic human needs;
Synergie developpement et partenariat international (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.9), headquartered in Geneva, seeks to promote development and the elements linked to achieving it, by providing help and support to health services, education and training on new information and communications technology, and the social and professional integration of young people and women;
United Network of Young Peacebuilders (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.9), a global network of young people and youth organizations based in The Hague, active in the field of peacebuilding, mostly working in violent conflict areas and post-war regions and committed to together building a world in which peace, justice, solidarity, human dignity and respect for nature prevail;
Verein zur Forderung der Volkerverstandigung (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.12), a national organization based in Vienna, aimed at furthering ties between peoples of different nationalities, by means of common activities and events, thereby intensifying understanding and peace between peoples;
World Igbo Congress (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.17), a United States-based national organization, whose purpose is to unify, promote, protect and advance Igbo culture and civilization;
Yukon River Inter-Tribal Watershed Council (YRITWC) (document E/C.2/2009/R.2/Add.20), a United States-based international organization, which seeks to understand the health of the Yukon River watershed, using a combination of methods -- advocacy, education, training and access to information and key support -- to accomplish its goals;
Kashmiri American Council (document E/C.2/1999/R.2/Add.8), a United States-based national organization whose chief aim is international education and promotion of principles of human rights and human dignity, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, self-determination and fundamental freedoms for all, irrespective of race, religion, language or sexual preference;
International Centre for Peace Studies (document E/C.2/2001/R.2/Add.8), an international organization based in New Delhi, whose activities include evolving frameworks to study conflict situations, conceptualizing conflicts and developing strategies for peacebuilding to address such situations with an emphasis on human rights;
Ambedkar Centre for Justice and Peace (document E/C.2/2002/R.2/Add.4), a United States-based international organization seeking to focus on the marginalized people of South Asian countries, to empower them to become contributing members of the human family and help them to lead a life of dignity, through education, vocation, advocacy for their rights and so forth, by democratic means;
Asian-Eurasian Human Rights Forum (document E/C.2/2002/R.2/Add.7), based in New Delhi, this international organization tries to identify the obstacles that come in the way of the promotion and protection of human rights, leading to the suggestion of remedial measures, and strongly believes that two broad sets of rights -- civil and political, and economic, social and cultural rights -- aim to give all people freedom from fear and want;
Social Alert (document E/C.2/2004/Add.4), an international organization based in Brussels, whose main objectives are to defend and promote economic, social and cultural rights, and towards that, it aims to, among other things, create networks among social, human rights and workers organizations, both from the North and South;
People’s Life Centre (document E/C.2/2007/R.2/Add.4), a national organization based in India, which aims at the establishment of a just social order based on human values, such as love, justice, equality, brotherhood, peace and harmony, in an environment wherein all the people get equal opportunity in all aspects;
Coordination internationale pour la decennia (document E/C.2/2007/R.2/Add.6), an international organization based in Paris, which seeks to promote the International Decade for a Culture of Peace and Non-Violence for the Children of the World (2001-2010), proclaimed by the United Nations General Assembly in resolution 53/25 of 10 November 1998;
Canadian Lawyers for International Human Rights (document E/C.2/2007/R.2/Add.7), a national organization in Ontario, Canada, which promotes and protects human rights globally through legal education, advocacy and law reform, putting Canadian lawyers’ experience and expertise to work to further civil, economic, political, social and cultural rights worldwide; and
Marijuana Policy Project Foundation (document E/C.2/2007/R.2/Add.10), a national organization based in Washington, D.C., which works to minimize the harm associated with marijuana -- both the consumption of marijuana and the laws that are intended to prohibit such use.
The Committee will meet again at 10 a.m. on Friday, 23 January, to continue its work.
* *** *For information media • not an official record