Welcome Message from the UN Secretary-General
UNITED NATIONS SECRETARY-GENERAL
H.E. MR. BAN KI-MOON
MESSAGE TO THE GLOBAL MODEL UNITED NATIONS
I am pleased to greet all participants in the second Global Model UN Conference organized by the United Nations. It is often said that young people are the leaders of tomorrow. And it is true. You will become mothers and fathers; employees and employers; active members of your respective communities.
But you are already leaders. Your ideas, your actions, your decisions make a difference. And, more than any other generation before you, you have a voice. Social networking is changing how we interact – and it can change our world. You are in touch with peers from around the globe. You understand the power of instant communication. I urge you to ensure this power is used for the common good.
The theme of your conference is the Alliance of Civilizations. The multiple crises of the past two years – fuel, food, flu, financial – have demonstrated repeatedly how we are all interconnected. Whether reacting to short-term economic turmoil or the long-term threat of climate change, it is plain that solutions have to work to the benefit of all. As a society we sink or swim together.
Yet, in too many instances, our response – as individuals, societies, cultures – is to withdraw into a protective shell from where we regard others with fear, suspicion or even hatred. We must break these ancient habits and forge a new way of relating that fits with our globalized and interwoven world – a new alliance of civilizations. This is the principle on which the United Nations is built, and it is a goal that you can help us achieve.
I believe in a world of justice and human rights for all. A world of tolerance where there is no room for extremism. A world where girls can grow up free of fear of abuse and women are treated with the respect and dignity that is their right. A world where poverty is not acceptable. You can make this your world.
By participating in the Global Model UN, you are showing the way. You will hear ideas and debate complex issues. You may well make friends that will change your lives. I am confident that your time at this Model United Nations will help you become the models the world needs. I wish you a most successful and enjoyable conference.