Report: SDGs and Canada

The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) were affirmed in 2015 at a forum of the United Nations. There are only ten years left to achieve the SDGs.

The British Columbia Council for International Cooperation (BCCIC), an organization the Vancouver Branch of the UN Association in Canada supports as a member, has released a report, Reading Between the Lines: Accelerated Implementation for Agenda 2030 which focuses on key mechanisms and considerations that can accelerate SDG implementation. The report aims to help shape Canadian policy on implementing the SDGs and positioning Canada as an accelerator of a global change through a deeper understanding of the principles of SDG implementation. This is ahead of the 2020 High-Level Political Forum that happens every July in New York.

“The United Nations has called on countries like Canada to accelerate action on the SDGs,” says Michael Simpson, the Executive Director of BCCIC. “COVID-19 has underlined the connections between global health, climate change, food security, poverty and all seventeen international goals of Agenda 2030. Our report also examines Canada’s performance in the midst of this crisis.”  

The Vancouver Branch is immensely proud of its co-Vice President, Nora Sahatciu, who contributed to Chapter 2. This chapter refers the necessity of a “whole-of-society approach” to combat the “four horsemen” who represent geopolitical tensions, climate crisis, global mistrust“. Amongst many other considerations, coordination between different government levels in their implementation of Agenda 2030 in Canada is seen as a key factor in addressing SDG goals in.

Join concerned Canadians and our organization in reading the report and doing our part to assist in the implementation of the SDGs.

Mourning Their Loss

The loss of 176 people from six countries in the crash of Ukraine International Airlines Flight PS 752 in Teheran on January 10th has been felt around the world and especially in Canada. Nine of those who died were from BC, and two of them had links with the Vancouver Branch of the UN Association in Canada.  Past-President, Greg Neumann – an educator with the Burnaby School Board and VP of the BC Social Studies Teachers Association,  remembers them:

The Vancouver Branch of UNA Canada joins many around the world who are mourning the loss of 176 people in the shooting down last week of Ukrainian Airlines Flight PS752 from Teheran to Kyiv.  In particular we would like to acknowledge one of the nominees for the 2017 John Gibbard Award.  Zeynab Asadi Lari and her brother who nominated her for the award, Mohammad Hossein Asadi Lari, both perished in the crash and we acknowledge the legacy of work they left behind in their much too short lifetimes.

Writing about his sister, Mohammad said, “She is passionate about youth leadership, student engagement and community work.” For those of us who knew her in Burnaby, this was already very evident as she had created both the Science and the UN Clubs at Alpha Secondary School, participated in the school district’s UN Connections Club as well as at University with her role in the STEM Fellowship founded by her brother.   The Fellowship gave her the opportunity to work with the UN Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) and her passion for medicine led her to intern in Iran with the UN World Health Organization.

In nominating Zeynab for the John Gibbard Award, Mohammad wrote, “This diverse range of activities has shaped her as a caring and passionate individual who strives for a positive global and local impact on the next youth generation.” Undoubtedly, Zeynab Asadi Lari and her brother did have an impact on those around them during their short lives. We, along with their family members, can only imagine what great things they would have achieved had they not been on the doomed flight.

The Board and members of UNAC Vancouver extend their deepest condolences to the family, friends and colleagues on whom Zeynab and Mohammad left their mark. 

The Recent Rosemary Brown Symposium

The Vancouver Branch of the UN Association in Canada was pleased to partner with SFU in hosting the successful 6th annual Rosemary Brown Symposium on the evening of Thursday, September 26th. 

A large public audience in the Morris J Wosk Centre for Dialogue was able to listen and learn from the keynote speaker, Joy Johnson, Vice President, Research and International, SFU. Additionally, Marion Buller, as the recipient of the Rosemary Brown Award for Women, spoke on “Reclaiming Power and Place”. The theme of the evening was “Women & Social Justice”. 

Thanks to Dariel Filwood for contributing the event photos. 

Nominations Closed for Gibbard Award

Thank you to all of those who nominated a youth or youth group in the metro #Vancouver area working to make positive changes in the world globally or locally with a global focus. Nominations are now closed.

Each year on the occasion of United Nations Day, the United Nations Association of Canada, Vancouver Branch recognizes the work of a young student or group of students for their dedication and commitment to working towards a better world.

The John Gibbard Memorial Award is presented in memory of John Gibbard, who was a supporter of the League of Nations from its creation in 1919, in the wake of the First World War.

The Award is given to youth up to 25 years of age in recognition of their dedication and commitment to working for humanity and a better world locally or internationally.

Previous winners include Andrew Sheroubi, Red Cross Student Movement,  Gurkiran Mann, founder of Youth Transforming Society (2016), Anjali Katta, CEO of Girlsco. (2015) and Ta’kaiya Blaney, indigenous and environmental activist/singer & songwriter (2014).

See our website for details and the nomination form: https://unavancouver.wordpress.com/john-gibbard-memorial-a…/

Thank you for your support

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The Vancouver Branch of the UN Association in Canada held their Annual General Meeting to review their achievements of 2018. The branch welcomed long-time and new members and supportive guests as well as inducting Jeff Brooks to a co-President position alongside continuing co-President Deirdre Moore, and Rhiannon Dominy-Pergentile as Secretary. Dedicated board members Jessica Steele and Jessie Sunner (co-Vice Presidents), Rosio Godomar (Treasurer), George Somerwill (Past President), Greg Neumann (Past President) and Directors Karen Truscott, Melanie Walker, Greg Doudican, Jocelyn Pittel (Giving), and Shirin Yadegiri with Honorary Director Dr. Patsy George will continue to inspire and advocate for United Nations ideals and related events as board members in 2019-20.

The meeting took place inside the inspirational LuluLemon offices in Kitsilano. Thank you to Safeway and Starbucks; both companies donated refreshments for our meeting.

The Vancouver Branch is run entirely on volunteer efforts and is funded through your donations, memberships and partnerships. All members of the public who wish to see more public engagement on global issues are encouraged to become members. Visit unac.org, click the “Get Involved” tab, “How to Donate or Join”, then scroll down to “Become a Member”. Under “Messages” indicate you wish to join the Vancouver Branch. Additionally, you may “Donate” to by specifically indicating “Vancouver Branch”. We thank you for your support as always. Please contact unacvancouver@gmail.com for more information.