Continuing its 2019 regular session, the Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations today recommended 91 organizations for special consultative status with the Economic and Social Council and deferred action on the status of 49 others.
The 19-member Committee considers applications for consultative status and requests for reclassification submitted by non-governmental organizations (NGO). Once an application has been reviewed and approved by the Committee it is considered recommended for consultative status. Organizations which were granted general and special status can attend meetings of the Council and issue statements, while those with general status can also speak during meetings and propose agenda items. Organizations with roster status can only attend meetings.
Action on several applications was postponed because Committee members requested further information from the candidates about, among other items, details of their respective organizations’ activities, partners, expenditures and sources of funding. Also, the representative of China noted that several organizations, in their applications or on their website, referred erroneously to Taiwan as a country, not as a province of China, and requested corrections.
The Committee on Non-Governmental Organizations will meet again at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, 23 January, to continue its session.
Special Consultative Status
The Committee recommended that the Economic and Social Council grant special consultative status to the following organizations:
TOBE Foundation for Rights & Freedoms (Yemen);
The Centre for Family Health Initiatives (Nigeria);
The Institute for the Protection of Women’s Rights (Iran);
The New Generation Girls and Women Development Initiative (Nigeria);
The Union of Arab Banks (Lebanon);
Tiruzer Ethiopia for Africa (Ethiopia);
Triumphant Hand of Mercy Initiative NPC (South Africa);
Union Nationale des femmes Algérienne (Algeria);
Union Pour La Promotion De La Femme Et De L'Enfant Nigerienne (Niger);
Union of Relief and Development Associations (Lebanon);
Wassa Karité (Mali);
Women Initiative for Sustainable Environment (Nigeria);
Women's Initiative for Self-Actualization (Nigeria);
Yemeni Observatory for Rights and Sustainable Development (Yemen);
Yoruba Indigene's Foundation (Nigeria);
Youth Crime Watch of Liberia (Liberia);
Youth Education and Leadership Initiative (Nigeria);
Zaindriss Foundation Inc. (Sierra Leone);
Zomi National Council of Myanmar (ZNCM) Social Organization (Kalaymyo) (Myanmar);
Əlil Təşkilatları İttifaqı (UPDO) (Azerbaijan);
Afrikanische Frauenorganisation (Austria);
Alberta Council for Global Cooperation (Canada);
American Academy of Arts and Sciences (United States);
Anglican Rite Roman Catholic Church (United States);
Aotearoa Youth Leadership Institute (New Zealand);
Apex Development Foundation (United States);
Arc Finance, Ltd. (United States);
Associação Nacional de Deficiência Mentais Raras - Raríssimas (Portugal);
BECARE USA Inc. (BECARE International) (United States);
Beit Hagalgalim (House of Wheels) (Israel);
Bir Dünya Çocuk Derneği (Turkey);
Center for the Study of Crime (Greece);
Commit-2-Change, Inc. (United States);
Continents University (United States);
Dignidad y Justicia en el Camino, Asociación Civil (Mexico);
Direct Aid Organization (Kuwait);
Earth Law Center (United States);
Ecocentre for Environmental Protection (Georgia);
European Network on Debt and Development (Belgium);
Feminenza International Ltd. (United Kingdom);
Fondation Medicines Patent Pool (Switzerland);
Fondation Millennia2025 Femmes et Innovation (Belgium);
Fondation du Dr. Julien (Canada);
Fondazione di ricerca scientifica ed umanistica Antonio Meneghetti (Switzerland);
Forum Européen des Femmes Musulmanes (Belgium) ;
Foundation for Building Sustainable Communities (Canada);
Foundation for International Medical Relief of Children (United States);
Fundación Cepaim, Acción Integral con Migrantes (Spain);
Global Alliance of NGOs for Road Safety (Switzerland);
Global Medic Force (Europe) (United Kingdom);
Global Music & Wellness Inc. (United States);
Groundswell International, Inc. (United States);
Ikkaido Ltd (United Kingdom);
International Action for Peace & Sustainable Development (Switzerland);
International Arts Movement, Inc. (United States);
Italian Climate Network (Italy);
Kadın Sağlıkçılar Eğitim ve Dayanışma Vakfı (Turkey);
La Voûte Nubienne (France);
MESCH (Medical and Educational Sustainable Community Help) Incorporated (Australia);
MUSIAD Corp. (United States);
Magyar Női Unió Egyesület (Hungary);
Migration Council Australia (Australia);
Montréal International (Canada);
Mundo a Sorrir — Associação de Médicos Dentistas Solidários Portugueses (Portugal);
National Council of Juvenile and Family Court Judges (United States);
Nature’s Rights (United Kingdom);
One Earth Future Foundation, Inc. (United States);
PeaceTrees Vietnam (Washington);
Pearl Initiative Inc. (United States);
RIO Rusmisbrukernes Interesseorganisasjon (Norway);
Rescue the Poor Child (Sweden);
Sanctuary for Families, Inc. (United States);
Smart Women’s Community Institute (Japan);
Sociedad Mexicana de Criminología Capítulo Nuevo León, Asociación Civil (Mexico);
Stichting Deep Sea Conservation Coalition (Netherlands);
Stopaids (United Kingdom);
Swiss Academy for Development, SAD (Switzerland);
TASC National Limited (Australia);
Terre des femmes Schweiz (Switzerland);
The National Council of African Descendants in America (United States);
The Paz Foundation (United States);
The Victor Pineda Foundation (United States);
Tsilhqot’in National Government (Canada);
US UCIA Corporation (Mexico);
Uluslararası Süleymaniye Eğitim ve Yardımlaşma Derneği (Turkey);
Union Theological Seminary (United States); and
World Obesity Federation (United Kingdom).
The Committee postponed consideration of the following organizations:
The Egyptian Coordination for Law and Justice (Egypt) — as the representative of Bahrain asked how it can account for the fact that 90 per cent of its income goes to administrative expenses, and 5 per cent to projects, and to elaborate also on its future financial plans;
The Reality of Aid Africa Network (Kenya) — as the representative of China, referring to the organization’s website, asked that it use the correct expression for Taiwan;
Union des peuples autochtones pour le réveil au développement (Burundi) — as the representative of Turkey requested details about its training activities;
United National Organization of Human Rights (Egypt) — as the representative of Bahrain asked for more details about its current and future projects;
Universal Peace and Violence Amelioration Centre (Nigeria) — as the representative of Brazil, noting that a member of the organization’s executive board is from Brazil, asked for details about its activities in that country;
Vikash Deep (India) — as the representative of India requested further details about its activities;
Voluntary Integration for Education and Welfare of Society (India) — as the representative of India, noting that the organization gets 100 per cent of its funding from international organizations, requested a breakup of the sources of that funding and details of the projects undertaken;
Welfare Association Jared (Pakistan) — as the representative of India asked that the organization explain its financial situation and how it intends to use its budget surplus in the coming years;
Yayasan Kota Kita Surakarta (Indonesia) — as the representative of Cuba requested details about ongoing and future projects;
YouChange China Social Entrepreneur Foundation (China) — as the representative of the United States requested details about its activities, including in South-East Asia, and how its projects in 2019 and 2020 will contribute to the Council’s work;
Youth Health and Development Organization (Afghanistan) — as the representative of India, noting that it receives 100 per cent of its funding from international donors, asked for more information about the sources of that funding and projects it undertakes;
Youth and Development Consultancy Institute (Egypt) — as the representative of Pakistan, noting that it receives 100 per cent of its funding from international organizations, requested details about its sources of income as well as its ongoing projects;
A New Dawn — Bedouin Jewish Centre in the Negev for Equality and Accessibility in Education, Research, Peace and Welfare Services (Israel) — as the representative of Cuba requested details about its current and future projects;
Aleh Jerusalem Centres (Israel) — as the representative of Bahrain asked if the members of its executive body are elected or nominated;
Association Québécoise des Organismes de Coopération Internationale (Canada) — as the representative of India asked for details about its activities in the area of women’s rights and gender equality;
Care 2 give, Inc (United States) — as the representative of Israel asked that it explain the composition of its executive board, as its application states that “all board members are from the Russian Federation”;
Centro Mujeres A. C. (Mexico) — as the representative of Nigeria requested details about its projects;
Cruelty Free International (United Kingdom) — as the representative of China requested that mistakes on its website regarding Taiwan province and the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region be corrected;
Ensar Vakfı (Turkey) — as the representative of Greece, noting that the organization receives 85 per cent of its funding from the private sector, requested a list of donors;
Family Planning NSW (Australia) — as the representative of India asked what other activities, besides cancer screening, it has undertaken recently;
GSM Association (Switzerland) — as the representative of China requested that references to Taiwan be corrected on its website;
Global One 2015 (United Kingdom) — as the representative of Cuba asked for information about its partner organizations in Syria;
Grace Leadership Foundation Inc. (United States) — as the representative of Israel requested that it elaborate on its international activities;
Great Enlightenment Lotus Society Inc. (United States) — as the representative of Nicaragua asked that it clarify how it does its work and to explain its budget deficit;
IAMANEH Schweiz Suisse Svizzera Switzerland (Switzerland) — as the representative of Bahrain requested details about its sources of funding;
International Civil Society Action Network, Inc. (United States) — as the representative of Turkey requested details about its activities in the area of countering violent extremism;
International Convocation of Unitarian Universalist Women (United States) — as the representative of Nicaragua requested more information about its projects in Latin America;
International Council for Small Business (United States) — as the representative of China asked that it correct erroneous references to Taiwan on its website;
International Council on Monuments and Sites (France) — as the representative of Libya requesting clarification of its activities in Syria and Libya, including who they dealt with in those countries;
International Medical Corps (United States) — as the representative of the Russian Federation, noting that the organization receives 70 per cent of its income from Governments, requested a list of its target projects and their sponsors, and as the representative of China asked that erroneous references to Taiwan in a recent annual report be corrected;
International Programme on the State of the Ocean (United Kingdom) — as the representative of China requested that it correct erroneous references to Taiwan;
Occupational Knowledge International (United States) — as the representative of China noted that the organization listed Taiwan as a country;
OneMama Incorporated (United States) — as the representative of Nicaragua requested a list of the countries in which it is present;
OneNess Foundations Diaspora USA (United States) — as the representative of Israel requested more details about its expenditures;
Partners for Progressive Israel (United States) — as the representative of China, stating that its final report lacks transparency and detail, asked how and in which field it uses its donated funds;
Partnership for Observation of the Global Oceans Society (Canada) — as the representative of China requested that it correct the reference to Taiwan on its website;
Peace Without Limits (PWL) International Organization, Inc. (Switzerland) — as the representative of Turkey asked for details about its chapters in various countries;
Peaceever TV International Media Group Inc. (United States) — as the representative of China asked that it correct an erroneous reference to Taiwan on its website;
Su Politikaları Derneği (Turkey) — as the representative of Greece asked that it elaborate on its provision of consulting services;
Swedwatch (Sweden) — as the representative of China requested that it correct erroneous references to Taiwan;
The Center for Bioethics and Culture (United States) — as the representative of China asked for a detailed report of its expenditures, which according to its financial summary exceeded income;
The Foundation for Political, Economic and Social Research (SETA) (Turkey) — as the representative of China, noting that its income is double its expenditure, asked how it planned to use those funds;
Türk Kadınlar Birliği Derneği (Turkey) — as the representative of Greece requested more details about its projects and activities;
UNISC International (Japan) — as the representative of China requested that it correct a reference to the government of Taiwan on its website;
United States Council for International Business, Incorporated (United States) — as the representative of China requested that it correct an erroneous reference to Taiwan on its website; and
YWCA of Japan (Japan) — as the representative of China requested that it correct an erroneous reference to Taiwan on its website.
During a question-and-answer session in the afternoon, NGO representatives faced questions from Committee members.
A representative of Global Energy Interconnection Development and Cooperation Organisation (China) said the organization was founded in 2016 to promote energy interconnection so that clean energy can be produced, distributed and consumed on a large scale. It is dedicated to contributing to the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Paris Agreement on climate change. It includes both group and individual members, with its executive council elected by a general meeting of all members.
The representative of the United States requested information about the status of its application for observer status with the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), income from research contracts, the benefits that result from membership and its activities relating to social issues.
She replied that the organization has been granted observer status with the UNFCC and that it attended the recent “COP24” conference in Poland. It maintains a research team that provides income-generating services to members. Membership benefits include a bimonthly journal, seminars and conferences, and a platform to facilitate cooperation and collaboration between members. Duly registered as an NGO in China, it has 13 overseas branches, with projects that include the provision of electricity to a school in Ethiopia.
The representative of the United States requested further details, in writing, about its projects outside China.
The Committee then decided to defer the organization’s application.
A representative of NORSAAC (Ghana) said the organization seeks to empower women and young people in the areas of health rights, gender and governance, education and livelihood. It makes suggestions to Governments and other policy implementors. On its sources of funding, he said it receives grants from many organizations in many countries, including Oxfam, Action Aid, the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) and the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). It has partnered with some organizations for 10 years already, he added.
The representative of Nicaragua asked about the sharing of best practices in countries outside Ghana. The representative of India wanted to know more about its work in the area of child marriage.
Replying, he underscored the importance of partnering with like-minded organizations and putting women and young people at the heart of its work by involving them in planning and implementation. It also networks to ensure that its actions get the needed attention, he said, underscoring the need to prioritize data and evidence in order to achieve effective advocacy. On child marriage, he discussed a community-level advocacy project whereby households are encouraged to post symbols to indicate their dislike and rejection of that phenomenon.
The representative of Pakistan requested more information, in writing, on projects the organization has undertaken with the Government of Ghana.
The Committee then decided to defer the organization’s application.
A representative of International Council for Small Business (United States) said the organization was founded in 1955, a decade after the United Nations, to promote entrepreneurship and small business worldwide. Present in 85 countries it campaigned within the United Nations for the declaration by the General Assembly in 2017 of an international day for small business. He emphasized that, to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals, the role of small business is essential and he requested Member States to help in that regard.
The representative of China asked for more information about how the General Assembly resolution on small business came to be adopted. He also pointed to articles found on the organization’s website that contained erroneous references to Taiwan, a province of China, and requested that corrections be made, in line with the one-China policy.
Replying, he said that Argentina agreed to sponsor the resolution and that, after nine months of negotiations, the text was adopted unanimously by the Assembly on 6 April 2017. He noted China’s recent adoption of a package for micro-, small- and medium-sized business, underscored the organization’s adherence to the one-China policy and stated that a letter would be sent to confirm that position. He went on to apologize “for any mix-up” in that regard.
The Committee then decided to defer the organization’s application.
A representative of Fondation européenne d’études progressistes (Belgium) described the organization as “the only progressive think tank at the European level”. Reviewing its work, he said its projects include promoting resilience in various parts of the world and exploring the nexus between security, development and human rights. Going forward, it hopes to focus more on the migration issue.
The representative of China asked for details about the organization’s work in China, and for an explanation of its funding from the European Parliament. The representative of Libya asked how it planned to support implementation of the Global Compact on Migration, which is not binding on Member States.
Replying, he said the organization has been invited by the Government of China to contribute to discussion on the Belt and Road Initiative. Funding is related to the representation of different political groups elected to the European Parliament. He added that the organization is aware that the Global Compact on Migration is non-binding, emphasizing however that the issue is a concern for many Europeans, particularly at the local level, where the organization is cooperating with municipalities to help them develop initiatives to assist migrants.
The Committee then decided to recommend the organization’s application.