Committee on NGOs Opens 2012 Session by Recommending 47 Organizations for Special Consultative Status with Economic and Social Council

30 January 2012
ECOSOC/6492-NGO/742

Committee on NGOs Opens 2012 Session by Recommending 47 Organizations for Special Consultative Status with Economic and Social Council

30 January 2012
Economic and Social Council
ECOSOC/6492 NGO/742
Department of Public Information • News and Media Division • New York

Committee on NGOs

1st & 2nd Meetings (AM & PM)

Committee on NGOs Opens 2012 Session by Recommending 47 Organizations for Special

Consultative Status with Economic and Social Council

 

Speakers Note Civil Society’s Rapidly Growing Interest in Working Closely

With United Nations, Say Streamlined Work Methods Needed to Meet Heavy Workload

Opening its regular session for 2012, the Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations, which is responsible for vetting applications seeking consultative status with the Economic and Social Council, today recommended special consultative status for 47 organizations, all but three of which were based in countries in the global South.

The 19-member Committee recommends to the Council general, special or roster status, in accordance with such criteria as the civil society applicant’s mandate, governance and financial regime.  Organizations enjoying general and special status can attend the Council’s meetings and circulate statements, while those with general status can, in addition, address meetings and propose agenda items.  Roster-status non-governmental organizations (NGOs) can only attend meetings.

Acting Director, Office for Economic and Social Council Support and Coordination, Department of Economic and Social Affairs, David Hanif, said, in today’s climate, ignoring the contribution of non-governmental organizations to development efforts was “not an option”.  Their work, “frequently extraordinary”, was becoming ever more important.  When disaster struck, NGOs were often first on the scene, spearheading relief efforts.  Likewise, their specialized knowledge and understanding of local populations and regional issues made them well-suited to fight intractable problems like poverty and disease.

If history was any guide, he said, “we know our odds for success improve dramatically when we collaborate, when we bring together a wide range of talent and expertise in support of a shared goal.  The answer, in a word, is:  partnership”.  That was why the NGO Committee performed such a valuable function.

The NGO Committee, he said, had played its role most admirably since 1946; its extremely rigorous vetting approach was a “shining model” of thoroughness.  Economic and Social Council consultative status, after all, was a privilege, and not a right.  High standards of behaviour, in line with the Council’s own demanding set of ethics, were universally required.  For the many NGOs that would undoubtedly pass that high test in 2012, he congratulated them in advance.  And, he thanked the Committee for its outstanding work, which he was sure would continue for years to come.

Elected by acclamation as Committee Chair was Maria Pavlova Tzotzorkova ( Bulgaria), who, in her opening remarks, noted the rapidly growing interest of civil society in working more closely with the United Nations.  Indeed, NGOs were playing an essential role, both at home and internationally, in fostering good governance, rule of law, and social and economic development, and the NGO Committee should strive to match the growing enthusiasm and conduct its work in a way that enabled it to handle properly the increased number of applications.

The workload this year was “impressive”, with nearly 200 new applications to be renewed and more than 150 from the previous session.  The Committee also had before it 375 new quadrennial requests and 20 deferred such requests, along with requests for reclassification and name changes.  Those numbers pointed to the need to streamline working methods, with deferred applications of particular concern.  The number of applications had increased almost four-fold in four years.  Although there had been a slight decrease in 2011, the overall workload remained “huge”.

While recognizing the plight of Committee members as they sought to clarify information related to the applications, it was equally important for NGOs to have their requests for status determined within a reasonable time frame, she said.  All queries should be made in a formal setting and, for that reason, delegates should refrain from putting forward questions after meetings had ended.  Meetings would also start on time.  She announced that the election of Vice-Chairs would be deferred, pending conclusion of informal consultations.

Also prior to consideration of applications, the Committee adopted its agenda (document E/C.2/2012/1), as well as its organization of work, as orally revised, contained in Working Paper 1.  It approved its tentative schedule of work, also contained in that paper.

When the floor was opened for general statements, issues concerning the Committee’s working methods, a subject of ongoing scrutiny among the members, were raised.  The delegate from China noted that over the years more than 3,536 NGOs had received consultative status with the Economic and Social Council and that this year the Committee’s workload “has reached a new high”.  Although the Chair had said that the number of deferred applications had increased from 2008 to 2012, during that same period the number of NGOs granted status was much higher than the number deferred.  That was strong evidence of the Committee’s effectiveness.

Against that backdrop, she said, it was crucial to maintain the Committee’s working methods, which had evolved and had improved continuously.  Member States had the right to learn more about each NGO, and that right must be respected.  Committee members should solve their concerns through enhanced interaction among themselves and with the applicants.  All applications should be reviewed on a case-by-case basis, and a one-size-fits-all approach should be avoided.  She emphasized that the concerns of all members should be solved satisfactorily.

The representative of Belgium said he supported all initiatives for informal consultations to advance consideration of applications and tackle the serious backlog in both new and deferred applications.

The representative of Morocco fully agreed with China’s delegation with respect to the working methods, which had been set forth clearly in Economic and Social Council resolution 1996/31.  The Committee, however, could consider the extent to which its members were ready to strengthen “collectively” those working rules, while respecting the existing ones.

Also acknowledging the “huge backlog”, the representative of Pakistan said each delegation had specific positions, but it would be possible to cut down on the arguments, and not waste time, if those were addressed at the start of each session.  There were issues on which the Committee could agree and issues on which it could not, “so let’s not waste time on issues on which there was a problem, so we can focus on those applications on which status was possible”, he urged.

The representative of Sudan, agreeing that the workload was “now extraordinary”, concurred with Pakistan’s delegate that there was a need to cut short the arguments in many cases.  He supported promotion of the 1996 guidelines, which were more or less the criteria followed by the Committee.

Also in opening remarks, the Chief of the NGO Branch, Andrei Abramov, touched on the issue of the working methods in his intervention, noting that, in December 2011, the Committee had agreed in informal consultations to continue that discussion.  More generally, he said that fully embracing partnerships and collaborative relationships with civil society enabled much better results than United Nations entities could achieve on their own.  “It is clear that partnerships are the way forward,” he stressed.  Noting increases in numbers of applications and in reports, he said those were due to a more structured and easier on-line application process implemented by the Branch, as well as better advice and outreach.  Non-governmental organizations from developing countries also enjoyed better access to the application system:  60 per cent of applications before the Committee were from those countries.

He noted, too, that based on the Committee’s suggestions, an informational booklet had been published by the Branch, which briefed NGOs on the benefits of establishing a consultative relationship with the Economic and Social Council and provided guidance on how to apply in the context of that Council’s resolution 1996/31.  The booklet, entitled “Working with ECOSOC:  A Guide to Consultative Status with the Economic and Social Council”, could be downloaded from the Branch’s website:  http://www.un.org/ecosoc/ngo.

This year’s work programme, he said, would keep the Branch very busy.  To facilitate review, the Branch had provided the necessary documentation through the “Paperless Committee”.  Among other endeavours, it was pursuing compliance with the reporting requirements from NGOs and it had initiated a comprehensive review of the quadrennial report system.

In the course of the Branch’s work, the workload and staffing needs had continued to increase, he said, noting that applications had doubled in 2011 and quadrupled for quadrennial reports.  This year, the workload was even bigger.  If that trend continued, without additional resources the Branch’s delivery might be affected.  The Branch relied exclusively on paperless methods of work and the absence of professional support for the “IT” systems in the Branch, therefore, was not viable.  In a breakdown of the paperless system, the Branch would not be in a position to restore support to the Committee.  He, along with Mr. Hanif, appealed to Member States to help find a way to resolve such pending issues.

Postponed

The Committee postponed consideration of the following:

Agence pour le Developpement Integre au Congo — a national Democratic Republic of the Congo-based organization working to combat poverty and HIV/AIDS in Congolese society — as Morocco’s representative asked for further access to supporting documents.

Alliance for Reproductive Health Rights — a national, Ghana-based organization seeking to promote rights-based advocacy to sexual and reproductive health through advocacy and inclusive policymaking in the interest of under-served communities, the poor and the marginalized — as the delegates of Morocco and Pakistan asked for more information about the organization’s financial statements.

There was also a related discussion, initiated by the representative of Morocco, about “glitches” in the paperless documentation system that had inhibited access to certain documents.  Acknowledging the possibility of such glitches, Mr. Abramov suggested nonetheless that the Committee should proceed with its list of organizations on a case-by-case basis.  Ms. Tzotzorkova added that the issue would be included in the future consideration of the Committee’s working methods.

Apne Aap Women World Wide (India) Trust — a national, India-based organization working to empower trafficked and at-risk women and children to organize against the demand for purchased sex and the injustice in their own lives, as well as to advocate their cause to trigger policy and institutional change — as the representative of Pakistan asked for clarification regarding a gap in the organization’s funding records.

Asociacion Centro Indigena para el Desarrollo Sostenible (CINDES) – a national Peru-based organization aiming to promote the well-being of Amazonian indigenous towns by helping in the protection of the environment, the ecology and indigenous culture — owing to a question raised by the delegate of Peru regarding the organization’s current national accreditation, as well as its funding.

Human Rights Network (HURINET) — a Ugandan national organization working to promote and protect human rights as provided for in the regional and international instruments that Uganda is party to, as well as to encourage close collaboration and networking among human rights organizations in Uganda, among other goals — as the delegate from Pakistan requested information about funding discrepancies.

ImageMagica — a national organization based in Brazil that aims to promote education, culture and health for youths and adults through photographic work and the publication of books — as responses to questions previously posed had not yet been received.

International Circle of Faith Chaplaincy Corps Ltd/Gte — an international, Nigeria-based organization creating an atmosphere for long life through rescue operation, combat against hunger, diseases and HIV/AIDS, as well as by promoting peace, salvation and security — as responses to questions previously posed had not yet been received.

International Council for the Day of Vesak (ICDV) — an international Thai organization with a focus on climate change, sustainable and social development, education and peacebuilding — owing to a question posed by the representative of China regarding the international nature of its work.

Sairam Population Research Trust — a national Indian organization aiming to support population control and family welfare activities, especially in the state of Andhra Pradesh — as the representative of Pakistan wished for clarification on the organization’s registration date and its funding.

Pacific Disability Forum — an international organization, based in Fiji, aiming to eliminate poverty for people with disabilities in the Pacific region — as the representative of China objected to the usage of the Province of Taiwan on the organization’s website, and asked it to correct the error and to clarify its position.

The representatives of Venezuela, Israel and Belgium also asked for clarification of the organization’s budget.

Pragya — an Indian national organization working for the development of vulnerable communities and sensitive ecosystems of the world, in particular reaching the most remote and difficult regions — as questions remained following the organization’s question-and-answer session.

The Institute for Conscious Global Change, Inc. — a national United States-based organization whose mission is to gather data and design a “Virtual Globe”, making the needs of countries more visible and accessible — as the organization would be considered later during the present session.

Special Consultative Status

The Committee recommended the Economic and Social Council grant special consultative status to the following:

A.K. Munshi Yojana — a national India-based organization aiming to promote medical centres; schools, colleges, educational and vocational guidance bureaus; and rehabilitation centres.

Some discussion concerning the organization took place, including several questions posed by the representatives of Belgium and Morocco.  Those included requests for clarification about the length of time the organization had been in existence.  However, sufficient information was subsequently provided and the Committee decided to move forward with its consideration of the organization.

Information concerning the organization’s registration was also discussed.  Mr. Abramov explained that some relevant information may have been lost in the course of migration to the paperless documentation system.

Africa Culture Internationale — an international Senegal-based organization aimed at protecting the rights of children, women and the environment.

African Agency for Integrated Development (AAID) — a national Uganda-based organization working to transform the living conditions of Ugandan community through information dissemination and implemented long-term sustainable programmes.

Ajegunle Community Project — a Nigerian national organization dedicated and committed to reducing social inequalities among the women and the girl-child that emanates from discriminatory practices and violence against women on social political issues.

Asian Consultancy on Tobacco Control Limited — a national China-based organization formed in response to the alarming increase of tobacco use in Asia.

A discussion took place during the Committee’s consideration of the organization, initiated by the Pakistani delegate, concerning the organization’s staff, which constituted only one person.  The representative of China provided information in response, citing that, under Hong Kong law, one person could, indeed, constitute a non-governmental organization.

In the same vein, the representative of Israel asked for guidance from the Secretariat regarding the types of organizations that could seek consultative status.  Mr. Abramov responded that a wide variety of groups could seek consultative status, and that organizations must be considered on a case-by-case basis.

Asociacion Civil Observatorio Social — a national Argentine organization specializing in social policy and aiming to promote social interaction at different levels of society, with an eye towards the promotion of freedom and social equity.

Association de l’Intervention pour les Meres — a national Mali-based non-governmental organization committed to reducing maternal and child mortality and ensuring that access to health care is improved.

Association des Jeunes pour l’Agriculture du Mali — a national Mali-based organization working to combat famine and poverty in Mali and Africa.

Association Dunenyo — an international Togo-based organization working to orient young people towards sustainable human development, as well as to promote their contributions to environmental protection.

Association of African Entrepreneurs — an international Ghana-based organization providing support to and working with small-scale business in rural areas in Africa.

Association pour l’Integration et le Developpement Durable au Burundi — a national Burundi-based organization working to make improvements in the health and education sectors.

Awaz Centre for Development Services — a Pakistan-based national organization working to facilitate community development and empowerment in southern Punjab province through community mobilization, capacity-building, research and activism.

Cancer Aid Society — a national India-based organization working towards the prevention of cancer through health education and counselling, among other services.

Centa for Organisational Development Ltd/Gte—a national non-governmental, non-political, not for profit organization seeking to redress the existing unbalances in women’s access to credit in Nigeria.

Center for Africa Development and Progress — an internationalresearch and educational institute dedicated to promoting a strong, just and free Africa, including by educating Africans on governance issues and how to exercise their franchise, and by exploring ideas to revitalize Africa Constitutions.

Centre for Development Communication — a national India-based organization working to improve the livelihood and rights of vendors and waste workers, women and youth through action organization, capacity-building, research and advocacy.

Centre for Economic and Leadership Development — a Nigerian national organization working to integrate responsive leadership and accountability in today and tomorrow’s leaders; to eradicate extreme poverty among the less privileged; and to support a wide range of efforts aimed at building better futures for the child and vulnerable youth.

Centro de Estudios Legales y Sociales (CELS) Asociacion Civil — a national Argentina-based organization aiming to foster and protect human rights, as recognized in the Universal Declaration of the United Nations and in international law.

Centro Ecuatoriano de Derecho Ambiental — a national Ecuadorian organization aimed at changing the attitude and practices of decision makers and of social leaders regarding environmental conflicts, through an innovative, integral and technical approach of capacity strengthening, investigation and public policy proposals and environmental legislation.

Children Education and Social Welfare Society — a national Pakistan-based organization working to eradicate gender discrimination by assisting national and international agencies in pursuing sustainable development projects and programmes.

Compagnons D’action pour le Developpement Familial — a national organization based in the Democratic Republic of Congo and aiming to promote the development of families living in peri-urban villages.

During the Committee’s consideration of the organization, the representative of Morocco requested clarification on its aims, noting that the stated mission was quite broad.  He questioned the decision to grant special consultative status.

In response, Ms. Tzotzorkova asked the Committee to reconsider the type of status granted to the organization.

The representative of Israel said that the organization should not be singled out for its broad mandate, and that special consultative status was indeed appropriate for the time being.  He provided some clarification on the requirements for granting special and general consultative status.

Concile Mondial de Congres Diplomatiques des Aumoniers pour la Paix Universelle des Droits Humains et Juridiques — a Haitian international organization advocating for human rights, universal dialogue and social, economic and environmental development, as well as humanitarian aid and security and the combating of terrorism.

Daya Pertiwi Foundation — an Indonesian national organization aiming to contribute to the development of the people’s economy and the prevention of climate change.

Fondation des Oeuvres pour la Solidarite et le Bien Etre Social - FOSBES ONG — a national organization based in the Democratic Republic of Congo aiming to ensure social protection, encouraging solidarity within communities and promoting the social inclusion of vulnerable people.

Fondation Marocaine de L'Education Pour L’Emploi — a Moroccan national organization working to address the problem of youth unemployment in the Middle East and North Africa region.

Frathekk Foundation Common Initiative Group – a national organization based in Cameroon whose aim is to combat poverty, improve the socio-economic situation of our mostly rural communities and to provide low cost, if not free, essential drugs.

Guru Angad Dev Sewa Society, Punjab, Ludhiana — an India-based national organization providing services to neglected elderly and infirm people, migrant daily wagers, slum-dwellers, rural women and girl children.

Horizon Foundation — a national organization based in Sierra Leone working towards the achievement of the Millennium Development Goals and the welfare of children and youth.

Impact for Change and Development Limited by Guarantee — a Nigerian national organization that adopts a rights-based approach to programming with the aim of bringing relief and empowerment to those in difficult circumstances.

Indian Development Foundation — a national organization, based in India, working to provide basic health, education and empowerment by establishing Gurukuls/Empowerment Schools, mobilizing resources for community development programmes and providing a support base for designated health activities.

Indigenous Information Network — a Kenyan national organization aiming to create, maintain, promote, lobby for, strengthen, enhance and build the capacity and the socioeconomic opportunities and development of the indigenous and minority peoples of Kenya.

Intercambios Asociacion Civil — a national, Argentina-based organization working to ensure the health and human rights of drug users through evidence-based programmes.

Iraqi Development Organization — an international organization which seeks to find ways to contribute to the development of Iraq and the welfare of its citizens on the basis of research and steps, in coordination with governmental and non-governmental organizations.

LDC Watch — an international organization, based in Nepal, constituting a global alliance of regional, national and international civil society organizations, networks and movements, which advocates and lobbies on LDC-related issues.

Liberian United Youth for Community Safety and Development — a national Liberian organization working to unite Liberians and provide sustainable services to women and youths, to care for people with chronic diseases and disability.

Local Action Organization — a national Sudanese organization contributing, among other things, to the building of capacity in designing projects that fight against poverty, ignorance, and disease.

Major Alliance Education Centre (MAEC) — a national United Republic of Tanzania-based organization aiming to promote human rights through community mobilization; to promote youth rights; to enable the community to fight against the pandemic disease HIV/AIDS; and to promote gender and other rights for vulnerable groups.

Mother Care Foundation (MOCAF) NGO — a national organization based in Cameroon working to curb the suffering of children with physical disabilities, orphans and street children, as well as to protect the rights of women, girls and youth through education, skill training and self-help.

National Coalition Against Racial Discrimination — a Nepal-based national organization working to create an alliance of diversified groups of marginalized communities to help voice their concerns in solidarity.

Ngoma Club — a national organization based in the Democratic Republic of Congo whose aims include the promotion of moral and ethical values, the exchange of scientific ideas, the creation of fraternity and the promotion of a spirit of innovation.

Nigeria Model United Nations Society — a Nigerian national organization promoting the interest of students and teachers in international relations and related subjects, as well as knowledge and support of the United Nations and an awareness of global issues.

Organisation camerounaise pour la protection de l’arbre – a national Cameroonian organization aiming to combat deforestation, and promoting the regeneration and conservation of natural forests.

Organisation pour la Renovation Environnante du Sud d’Haiti (RESH) – a national Haitian organization working to reduce extreme poverty and hunger, ensure primary education, promote equality and improve maternal health, among other goals.

Public Fund “Medialife” – a national Kazakhstan-based organization working to improve the professionalism of the Kazakh media, develop effective dialogue among Government bodies, the media and NGOs, and provide legal support for the media and citizens in the field of freedom of speech.

All-Russian Public Organization of Disabled People with Multiple Sclerosis — a national organization based in the Russian Federation with the aim of involving all citizens suffering from multiple sclerosis, and their families, in activities of social and medical rehabilitation.

Famille Debout — a national Belgian organization supporting the cultural blossoming of Belgian and African families.

Innovation:  Africa – an international organization, based in the United States, which brings sustainable technologies to African villages, including solar technologies for African schools, medical clinics and water pumping systems.

Interactive Dialogue

When the Committee turned to its interactive segment with NGO representatives, it heard first from a member of Pragya, a national India-based organization, self-described as working for the development of vulnerable communities and sensitive ecosystems of the world and carrying the benefits to the most remote and difficult regions, delivering an array of services to isolated and under-served communities, and building their capacity to help themselves.

Responding to a question by Belgium’s delegate about what the organization intended to do to enhance the Economic and Social Council’s work, the speaker said she was fairly new to the NGO and could not provide any specifics.  More generally, the group worked in four basic areas throughout the Himalayas, including social and economic development, natural resource management, cultural and arts advancement, in an effort to address community needs in a holistic and multidisciplinary way.  For example, it offered educational programmes in the area of water and sanitation.

Next, a representative of the All-Russian Public Organization of Disabled People with Multiple Sclerosis, a national NGO headquartered in Moscow, which has as its goal the protection and realization of the constitutional rights of Russian people affected by multiple sclerosis, was asked by the delegation of Kyrgyzstan about its activities and the contribution it intended to make to the Economic and Social Council.  The representative replied that the NGO brought together people suffering from the serious neurological disorder, begun in the early years of life.  The NGO worked in the area of social protection and promotion of rights of persons with disabilities.  It also worked in the areas of rehabilitation and health care, and legal assistance to people spread throughout the large territory of the Russian Federation.  The NGO had come to the United Nations every three or four years for major scientific congresses, and it believed that, granted consultative status, it could continue to spread the positive experience it had accumulated to enhance the quality of life for people suffering from the disease.

The Committee then recommended special consultative status to the NGO.

When the representative of Famille Debout, a Belgian-based national organization, took the floor, the representative of Belgium asked about the NGO’s commitment in the field.  The representative said that the NGO’s activities had included free schooling for some 130 children.  Since applying for consultative status two years ago, the organization had undertaken, among others, educating orphans, as well as children whose parents could not meet their educational needs.

Asked by the delegate from of Kyrgyzstan about the contribution the organization would make to the Economic and Social Council, the representative said the NGO wished to participate in events organized by the Council related to education and the family, and to share with other NGOs its experience in the field.  It also wished to work hard on the Millennium Development Goals, especially concerning poverty.

Replying to a request by Pakistan’s representative for further elaboration on what the NGO meant by “cultural fusion” in the family and the central African region, the representative said the story of Belgium and the Democratic Republic of the Congo was a shared one, and the NGO’s founder thought it was very important to have a multicultural community between the two.

Asked by the delegate of Burundi if the NGO had activities in his country, the representative said that, for the time being, the organization was primarily active in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

The Committee then recommended the NGO for special consultative status.

Next, a representative of Innovation:  Africa took the floor.  The United States-based international NGO, also known as the Jewish Heart for Africa, has as its mission to combat challenges connected with energy/electricity, preventable disease, and water by bringing sustainable technologies to African villages.  Its representative, asked by the delegate from the United States, about the organization’s activities and its goals for contributing to the Economic and Social Council, said the NGO was primarily committed to contributing to ongoing efforts by the United Nations to achieve the Millennium Development Goals, especially reduction of extreme poverty, promotion of education and skills training, maternal health and, notably, environmental sustainability.

Specifically, he said, the organization focused on the use of sustainable and clean renewable energy, in particular solar energy to provide power and water pumping assistance to African schools, medical clinics and orphanages.  The NGO, he said, was committed to addressing the problems of the most disadvantaged Africans, especially in the remotest parts of the continent.  It utilized Israeli state-of-the-art solar technologies to further its aim.  It was a relatively new organization — founded three years ago — but it was among the fastest-growing.  It had 40 projects in four countries and an active membership of more than 700 volunteers.

The representative of Sudan asked for more details about the projects and the countries in which the NGO was operating, saying the response “was a bit generic on activities in Africa”.

The NGO representative said that the organization was operational in four countries in East Africa:  Ethiopia; Uganda; United Republic of Tanzania; and Malawi.  It had offices registered in those countries, and it coordinated with those Governments.  It was also establishing partnerships with local NGOs there.

The representative of Morocco asked several questions about the budget, particularly how it managed four projects with $260,000.

The NGO representative explained that the projects were financed from donations, with almost 100 per cent devoted to the projects’ implementation.  Sustainable financing was an area of focus because, to some extent, that depended on the sustainability of the projects themselves.  The aim was for the projects and their beneficiaries to become sustainable.  He could not say the NGO was sustainable, but “at least we are fully funded”.

The representative of Morocco sought further clarification on whether the financial sustainability of the organization depended on the ability of the projects to generate revenue.

The NGO representative said the initial source of support came from donors, but sustainability was the objective.  “As we move on, some of the projects will generate funds to sustain themselves,” he said.  He believed that strategy would enable the NGO to make a very important contribution, namely, to target populations in remote African villages, some of them, untouched thus far, even by government intervention.

The representative of Sudan intervened with a further question about budgets, asserting that dividing the $260,000 among the four countries amounted to about $60,000 to $70,000 per country.  He asked how projects and technologies of such ambitious scale could be undertaken with such funds.

The NGO representative said the organization did not go to a country until it had mobilized the country’s resources for a particular project.  So it was not that it was dividing its budget by the number of countries.  The NGO first reached out to potential donors and foundations, and once it had acquired the necessary resources, it then got the countries involved.

The Committee next heard from a representative of The Institute for Conscious Global Change, Inc., a national United States-based organization, which describes its aim as designing a virtual globe, making the needs of each country more visible and accessible — the effect of which would be to highlight the problems of each country in one main centre so the solutions could be quickly sought and served.

Asked about the goals of the organization and how it planned to contribute to the Economic and Social Council, the representative said the Millennium Earth Project was focused on addressing all the internationally agreed Millennium Development Goals.  Its objective was to build a more comprehensive and holistic plan for addressing “need” in the 49 least developed countries, by taking one country from each of the three geographical areas in which those counties existed and develop them as prototypes.  The organization would then identify the problems and map them out, evolving an “MDG 9”, or an infrastructure by which to address the eight “MDGs”.  In that way, the NGO aimed to create a “virtually developed” country to enable it to partner with other countries and the United Nations to permanently and sustainability move a country from the least developed to a developed status.

The Chair said that, since questions remained, the Committee would consider the application later in the session.

The representative of Senegal moved to grant special consultative status to Innovation:  Africa.  That was seconded by the representative of Kyrgyzstan, whosaid the replies had been “very satisfactory and comprehensive”.

The Committee then granted special consultative status to that NGO.

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For information media • not an official record
For information media. Not an official record.