Youth delegates at the 62nd GA session

Youth delegates at the 62nd GA session


  • 8 October: Breakfast Briefing for Youth Delegates
    Organized by the UN Programme on Youth
    Venue: 2 UN Plaza, DC2-1337 (44th st, btw 1st & 2nd Ave), 8.15 to 9.45 a.m.
  • 8 to 10 October: Third Committee discusses youth issues
    See Provisional Agenda A/62/150, item 64b.
    Venue: UNHQ, Conf. Rm. 2.
  • 8 October: Empowering Youth in the Global Economy
    Seminar organized by Youth Delegates to the 62nd Session of the General Assembly.
    Venue: German House (1st Ave at 49th St. 22nd floor), 1.15 to 2.30 p.m. See flyer for more details.
  • 9 October: Youth participation for development: assessing experiences of youth participation in policymaking
    Organised by the Youth Employment Network. See flyer for more details.
    Venue: UNHQ, Conf. Rm. 9, 1.15 to 2.30 p.m.
  • 10 October: Youth participation in fighting HIV/AIDS
    Global Youth Coalition on AIDS, NGO Committee on Youth, UN Program on Youth, UNFPA (TBC).
    Venue: UNHQ, Conf. Rm. 9, 1.15 to 2.30 p.m.
  • 11 October: Breakfast Briefing: Empowering vulnerable and marginalized youth in employment and education”
    Permanent Mission of Switzerland to the UN
    Venue: Swiss Mission, 633, Third Avenue, 29th floor. See flyer for more details.


Commission for Social Development, 45th Session
Resolution on Youth 45/2
Supplement to the World Programme of Action for Youth to the Year 2000 and Beyond

Follow-up to the World Programme of Action for Youth to the Year 2000 and Beyond: Report of the Secretary-General (A/62/61 & E/2007/7)
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Goals and Targets for Monitoring the Progress of Youth in the Global Economy: Report of the Secretary-General (Addendum to A/62/61 & E/2007/7)
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Draft Resolution sponsored by Senegal and the United Kingdom: Policies and Programmes Involving Youth: “Youth in the Global Economy”: Promoting Youth Participation in Social and Economic Development (FORTHCOMING)



Ben Groom: Youth Delegate from Australia23; Law/Economics student from Hobart, Tasmania.  His background includes work with the Australian Red Cross (both locally and internationally) and the United Nations Youth Association of Australia. In 2005, Ben postponed university and traveled extensively throughout Asia, the Middle East, Europe and North America .  As a part of this trip he spent six months in Geneva, where he interned at the United Nations Environment Program and the Institute for Governance and Sustainable Development. To prepare for his time at this year’s General Assembly Ben has spent five months traveling across Australia and met with thousands of young Aussies within a diverse range of settings. He says “Climate change, poverty and indigenous issues are high on the agenda of young people and we’re not afraid to say so. This is a generation of young Australians not willing to wait for Governments to react to these issues: we are a generation of urgency. We want opportunities to be empowered to take action ourselves.” Ben is carbon neutral (thanks to Origin Energy), has made several appearances on national television, is in the process of making a documentary to help communicate his experiences and has collected the thoughts of hundreds of young Australians in the form of a journal which he will be presenting to the Secretary-General in New York. Visit Ben’s website at or, Watch Ben on YouTube.


Florian Zuckerstaetter:


Rovshan Muradov: Youth Delegate from AzerbaijanAge 22; Residence: Baku, Azerbaijan. Currently studying for his Master’s Degree in International Economic Relations at the State Economic University. His hobbies are listening music and swimming. In 2006, along with his friends he created a youth organization called “Power of Youth”, that hosted the Youth Employment Summit in Azerbaijan. He participated in the Third World Youth Congress in Scotland, the Third Youth Employment Summit in Kenya, the 2007 YES Forum in Alexandria and the recent Sharm El-Sheikh International Youth Forum. He has accrued a great deal of international experience from these events, as well as made a lot of friends. He says “All youth from all over the world must work together to achieve the MDGs”.

Shahin Khalilov: Youth Delegate from AzerbaijanAge 18; Residence: Baku, Azerbaijan. Currently studying Tourism Management at the Azerbaijan Tourism Institute. He began working on youth issues when he was selected to be chairman of the Student Youth Organization of the Institute during his first year. He is also a co-founder of the “Power of Youth” Social Union and is a YES Azerbaijan Country Leader. He says “Youth organizations play a very important role in the life of a young person”. He participated in the Youth Employment Summit Alexandria Forum, and the International Youth Forum in Sharm El-Sheikh.

Elnur Ireli: Youth Delegate from AzerbaijanAge 27; a graduate of Indiana University (USA) he is currently a PhD student at the Azerbaijan State Economic University researching creative and knowledge management science. He also teaches creative management, organizational behavior, business ethics, strategic management at the University and is working on developming Distance Education in Azerbaijan. He is the co-founder of the IRELI Countrywide Youth Movement that has around 3500 youth members who are active in promoting the MGS, HIV/AIDS awareness, environmental projects and other local social programmes. He helped create a Model United Nations Security Council game that was broadcast live on TV in his country, creating a lot of interest in the local youth community (for more information, please see


Boryana Atanassova Youth Delegate from Bulgaria Age 21; a student at the American University in Bulgaria (AUBG); double major in Business and European Union Studies; designated by the UN Youth Association in Bulgaria (UNYA) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as the first official youth delegate of Bulgaria to the GA. She spent the last academic year in New York University on a fellowship from through the Open Society Institute. While interning in New York at the Bulgarian mission, she attended the 45th Session of the Commission for Social Development, as an observer. Back home, she continues working for the institutionalization of a youth delegate programme as well as promoting youth representation in less developed regions. Boryana fervently believes that youth should be included in the decision-making process because it is a key driving factor of change in society. Currently, she is heavily involved in developing a project to empower high school students through project management and community service trainings. Due to her enthusiasm and passion in her NGO work, she was awarded the Goldman Sachs Global Leader distinction for 2006. Boryana is more than thrilled to attend the GA in the shoes of a real diplomat and looks forward to working with the other youth delegates. Email:

Ivaylo Stoimenov Youth Delegate from Bulgaria Age 27; born in Sofia; currently a Ph. D. student of Public Relations at the “Sv. Kliment Ohridski” Sofia University. He has a B.A. in Public Relations and a M.A. in Cultural Anthropology of South-Eastern Europe. He is devoted to youth work since 1999 when he was elected as a member of the Students Council of Sofia University. From 1999 to 2003 he was the P.R. manager of the Council. In May 2003, he established the Youth Organization of the United Nations Association of Bulgaria and is currently its president. In that capacity, he also acts as the national coordinator for Eastern Europe in the framework of the Global Partnership for Prevention of Armed Conflicts (GPPAC) program. Ivaylo is a member of the Bulgarian Public Relations Association and of the International Association for Southeast European Anthropology (InASEA). He also works as a free-lance journalist and publishes in various Bulgarian media. He is actively involved in campaigns for protection of the environment and is a member of the Initiative Committee establishing a new Green party in Bulgaria. His hobbies include motorcycles (his classic Yamaha), fitness and football (his team >> Levski Sofia!).


Karsten Lauritzen: Youth Delegate from DenmarkAge 23; Residence: Hjørring, Denmark. Currently studying political science at Aalborg University. He began working on youth issues when he elected president of Danish liberal youth in 2005. currently, he is running for the Danish parliament and working on youth issues at the Danish youth Council.


Eekku Aromaa: Youth Delegate from Finland Age 26; is active in Scouting since 1988; Eekku has served roles from Patrol Leader to District Rover Team and to Coordinating Group of the “Gifts for Peace” Project in Finland. Currently she represents Finnish Scouting in the International Committee of the Finnish National Youth Council Allianssi. In addition to Scouting Eekku is involved with Finnish Green Youth and Students, serving currently as its Secretary-General. Having candidated in the parliamentary and municipal elections, Eekku holds currently office as Chair of the Standing Committee for Equality in Espoo, the second largest city of Finland. Eekku has studied Social Sciences in University of Jyväskylä, majoring in Social and Public Policy with supporting minor in Gender Studies. At the moment she is finishing her master’s thesis.


Marah Köberle: Youth Delegate from GermanyAge 22; Political Science student from Augsburg, Germany. Began working for youth early in life with KJG (Catholic Young Community) at national and international levels. She was selected to become a youth delegate via the German National Committee for International Youth Work and the United Nations Association of Germany. Along with the other youth delegate, Jonathan, Marah spent 8 months travelling across Germany. They visited universities and schools and met with youth organizations such as the Scouts, the United Nations Association-Youth, the German Sports Youth, as well as religious youth organizations. They met young people from diverse backgrounds and heard what they had to say. Marah says, “This has taught me a lot about life in Germany – what a great experience!” Some of the concerns of young people living in Germany are related to equal opportunities, water, globalization and HIV/AIDS. To find out more, please visit:

Jonathan Mack: Youth Delegate from GermanyAge 23; studies political sciences in Berlin, Germany. For fifteen years he has been member and active leader in the Scout Movement. Three years ago he started to work with Roma youth from around Europe for their empowerment through non-formal education. He states, “It is unacceptable that Europe continues to discriminate it’s biggest minority, the Roma. We need a dialogue based on mutual respect and real participation of minorities and of young people in order to fight racism, antisemitism, romaphobia and homophobia.” He travelled along with Marah across Germany. He adds “Young people do not want to accept poverty and inequality in this world. Therefore, we need to STAND UP for the MDGs and for the empowerment and equal opportunities of young people.”


Antonio Marco D’Acri: Youth Delegate from Italy Graduated in International and Diplomatic Sciences, with a specialization in International Economy and a dissertation on German Economic Policy post-1989. During his university studies, he worked at the Turin Opera House and was also a part of the Scout Association and the Youth Organization for International Organizations. After graduation, he worked as an Environmental Economy Professor at Putra Malaysia University in Kuala Lumpur. He has also completed a Masters degree in Diplomatic Sciences with the support of the Italian Ministry for Foreign Affairs and the University Institute for European Studies. During his Masters’ programme, he worked along with the UNESCO Centre in Turin on a programme to increase awareness of international organizations in schools. He represented the Turin UNESCO Centre at the UNESCO International Congress in Athens. As the Vice President of the Italian Youth Forum, he attended the 2007 Euro-Africa Consultation on the African Diaspora in Europe. He has spoken on the European Constitution at a roundtable in Florence organized by the Young European Federalist Organization. He currently writes for the United States of Europe Review and is also a counsellor for the Grugliasco Municipality in Italy where he is in charge of promoting European Cizitenship, and is the President of the Commission for Culture and Education.


Katya Puga: Youth Delegate from MexicoAge 22; B.A. in Political Science (ITESM-CCM); She is currently, working for the Director General of International Relations in the Ministry of Health, where she has had the opportunity to participate in various projects related to international cooperation, such as social protection in health, social cohesion, and health diplomacy. In August 2007, she was selected to be one of the three Mexican Youth Delegates by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs along with the National Commission for the Development of the Indigenous People (CDI), the Mexican Institute of Youth (IMJUVE), and the National System for Integral Family Development (DIF). The selection purpose included an essay, for which she wrote about youth initiatives within the framework of the Second International Decade of the World’s Indigenous People. Her academic interests focus on political systems, democratization, and inclusive institutional arrangements in Latin America. As a part of her academic work, she has also presented papers in seminars organized by the Mexican Association of International Studies. Also, she is member of DEMOS, an organization focused on the strengthening youth political participation.

Lucila Sánchez García: Youth Delegate from Mexico Age 23; A member of the Mixteco ethnic group from Oaxaca, Mexico. She recently completed her degree in International Relations and is now working on her thesis on the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) and the Human Development Index (HDI). Her passion is visual art, as she promotes indigenous art in urban settings to promote rural traditions and create awareness of their importance today. Her cultural performances range from dancing on stilts, to making multicoloural carpets on beds of sand. As a contemporary artist, her paintings follow the expressionist school; she also creates pieces of art from recycled material. She says “In this way we can create and recycle at the same time.” Lucila is deeply committed to education and says that education is vital to achieving a better quality of life in her country. She has also been a volunteer in the Sierra Sur mountains of Oaxaca, where she teaches adults to read and write. Currently, her main objective is human rights education among the indigenous community which would help educate and protect them against violations.

Leticia Gasca: Youth Delegate from Mexico Age 21; Currently a student of business administration and marketing at the Marist University in Mexico City. She has also studied leadership, rural development and women entrepreneurship. Having worked with indigenous communities since the age of 16, she believes that social enterprise leads to development. In fact, she is a social entrepreneur, currently working in Sierra Negra, a productive project that promotes development and empowers indigenous people, which has also featured in the World Bank’s Development Marketplace in Mexico. She is also the as co-editor of a Mexican newspaper promoting social responsibility. Her future plans include collaborating in projects related with the eradication of extreme poverty, social responsibility, development, and the promotion of education. In 2006, she was chosen as “Universitary of the Year” in Social Responsibility, and recently won third place at “BIDAmérica 2007”, a journalism contest organized by the Inter-American Development Bank.


Sandra van Beest: Youth Delegate from the Netherlands Age 22; she is a student of International Law and is the Dutch youth delegate at the United Nations for 2007 and 2008. The Queen of the Netherlands was the first youth delegate ever at the United Nations. For the past four years, Netherlands has held democratic elections to select youth delegates. Prior to the elections, she worked on a child labour project in India where she met young girls who had worked from the age of five, and had never had the chance of an education or to play like normal children. She says “This has impacted me greatly, which is why I campaign for issues related to education for all and equal rights for women and men” Since becoming a youth delegate, she has visited many schools and talked with young people about issues that concern them. She adds “I hope to be of service to youth specially for HIV/AIDS and reproductive rights and hope to learn more. But no matter what issues are addressed, the voice of youth should be heard, and that’s always worth fighting for”. Watch Sandra on YouTube.


Erlend Fuglum: Youth Delegate from Norway Age 29; From Grong, a small municipality with 2500 inhabitans in the middle of Norway; he is currently the president of Senterungdommen, The Centre Party Youth Organisation in Norway, where he has been active the Centre Youth. He is a real veteran in his organization, since he started at the local level and worked his way up. He has a bachelor’s degree in Information Technology, and has also studied political science. His non-political interests are music (the trumpet), movies (especially hardcore Science Fiction movies), literature, photograpy, wildlife, and he can light a fire anywhere anytime! His blog: (in norwegian).

Marianne Nerland: Youth Delegate from Norway Age: 22; from Oslo; her hobbies include movies, music, food and politics. Since 2003, she has been the Vice President of PRESS – Save the Children, where she began at local level in her home city in Trondheim. PRESS is a youth organization for people between the age of 13 and 25 that works to draw attention to the rights of the child, and identifies reasons why these are violated. She says that the word PRESS means “pressure” in Norwegian, and says that pressure will be exterted to make a better world for children via politicians, stakeholders and society in general. The main issues for her current work include arms trade, commercialization of childhood, asylum-seeking children and international trade. As the Vice President of PRESS, Marianne takes part in the daily work of the organization. Along with Erlend, she was elected by the Norwegian Youth Council to be a youth delegate to the UN General Assembly in 2007. She hopes to be a resource for the Norwegian delegation and other youth delegates, can contribute to issues concerning youth and children. She looks forward to learning more about the UN and what influences international politics.


Laura Munteanu: Youth Delegate from RomaniaAge 24; currently a student of the Magistère in International Relations and Foreign Affairs 2008 at Sorbonne 1, Paris and also a volunteer for a Romanian non-Governmental Organization working to strengthen democracy. She has been involved in different youth organizations and projects since high-school; from establishing a youth association in her hometown in northern Romania, to organizing the first Model UN and Model EU in Bucharest. She says “I believe that youth are not just the leaders of tomorrow, but they should also be today’s partners. Young people should have greater access to the decision-making process, especially in matters concerning them”.


Viktoria Kharchenko: Youth Delegate from Russia She is the Vice Chairperson of the National Youth Council of Russia (NYCR) responsible for International Affairs; she has been involved in international youth cooperation for 7 years, begining by first volunteering at her university. Currently, she is doing her Masters’ Degree in European Studies. She says, “This is the first time that Russia has a youth delegate at the General Assembly. My main issues are intercultural and interreligious dialogue, fight against racism, xenophobia discrimination and of course youth participation in decision-making process”. She further says that these issues are actually the themes of a youth campaign “All Different – All Equal” that took place in Europe, which will end this October. The slogan “All Different – All Equal” means that all people in the world are different, for example, they look different and follow different religions, but they must have equal rights. This campaign has been extended for four more years in the Russian Federation and will conclude with the World Youth Festival in Russia! We encourage other countries to join in!


Elena Dikáczová: Youth Delegate from Slovakia Age 25; working as the Secretary for International Affairs in the Youth council of Slovakia (RMS); finished studies of international financial management in Bratislava and Halle; spent six months in Iceland working as a volunteer coordinating an environmental project entitled “Clean up the world”; in 2007 began working with an NGO representing children and youth in Slovakia focusing on youth employment, volunteering and the fight against discrimination. She says “I’m trying to motivate young people to get involved in youth organizations, which I believe, will contribute to their personal and professional development”. In her free time she likes to swim. Her greatest passion is traveling as a means of discovering other cultures.


Gabriel Ehrling: Youth Delegate from SwedenAge 21; A member of LSU – The National Council of Swedish Youth Organisations and believes strongly in people’s ability to achieve great things when they join together. He works extensively in non-formal education in Sweden. He is currently also the president of Förbundet Vi Unga, a Swedish Youth-led NGO also working as assistant to the regional manager of SV (Studieförbundet Vuxenskolan), a non-profit NGO working with non-formal education in Stockholm-Uppsala. Among other things he has co-ordinated projects exploring new ways of encouraging young people influence in society and is convinced that changes and improvements of the world must start local in people’s everyday life. He points out the huge potential in people all over the world and urges all to take power over their own lives. He says “Civil society must be viewed as a resource and asset as it gives people the tools to have power over their own lives”. To prepared for his participation in the General Assembly, Gabriel visited youth festivals and youth organisations, wrote debate articles to Swedish newspapers and met several political leaders to discuss issues related to “youth and the global economy” that will be discussed at the Assembly this year. Visit Gabriel’s website at


Adina Rom: Youth Delegate from Switzerland Age 22, studies politics in Geneva. She is actively involved with an NGO that works against racism and discrimination (, and also in other groups promoting peace in the middle east ( and She also volunteers at an advisory centre for asylum seekers and at a human rights organization ( Recently, she began an internship with Human Rights Watch. She says “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights. Today, every fifth child’s right to education is denied, and almost half of the world’s youth live on less than two dollars a day. We have to change this for tomorrow”. In June 2007, the Swiss National Youth Council ( elected her to be one of three Swiss youth delegates. She adds “Swiss youth delegates have two goals; on one hand, they take an active part in issues relevant to youth at the UN, and on the other, they want to make young people in Switzerland more aware of the importance of the UN and related issues, like the MDG’s and Human Rights”. This year, they have decided to focus on youth poverty. Her aim is to encourage youth participation at a national and international level, since young people are not only a target, but also a partner for development. Watch Adina on YouTube.

Photographs with the Secretary-General

 Watch the meeting with the Secretary-General on YouTube >>


European Youth Forum
Global Youth Action Network (GYAN)
Pax Romana
World Organization of the Scout Movement