Model UN enthusiasts

CITY OF LIGHT: The Gisborne crew (from left) Karepa Maynard, Kate Falloon, Kyle Hannah and Kahu Rangiuia Lindup in Paris with the Eiffel Tower in the background. They also visited Unesco (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation) while in the city; other highlights included a river cruise on the Seine and visiting the Arc de Triomphe and Champs Elysees.
Pictures supplied
THE TOP TABLE: Kate Falloon stands in the Security Council chamber in the United Nations headquarters in New York.
BRRRR LIN: The New Zealand delegates in front of the Reichstag in Berlin. The Reichstag is the historic meeting place of the Bundestag (the German parliament).

Four Gisborne students have returned from the experience of a lifetime visiting seven countries as part of the United Nations Youth Global Development Tour. They talk to Kim Parkinson about the life-changing trip.

Kate Falloon, Kyle Hannah, Karepa Maynard and Kahurangi (Kahu) Rangiuia Lindup visited some of the world’s most famous cities on a study tour which began in New York.

There they attended the Columbia Model United Nations Conference and Exposition at Columbia University’s Morningside Heights campus. They then visited London, Paris, Berlin, Vienna, Rome, and stopped in Hong Kong on the way back to New Zealand.

The UN Global Development Tour is an educational experience for young global citizens where they learn about sustainable development, diplomacy, international relations, and the role of the United Nations in it all.

The former students at Gisborne Girls’ and Boys’ High Schools were part of a 21-strong New Zealand delegation.

The group of high school friends will head to Auckland soon, where they will begin studying at the University of Auckland.

They said they felt inspired by their international experience and were eager to begin tertiary study.

Kate said the directors were looking for people who were passionate about global issues, particularly the Sustainable Development Goals set by the United Nations.

“For me, this trip was an amazing stepping stone towards the line of work I personally hope to follow after tertiary study.

“I have always been passionate about helping people and the world we live in, so being able to meet so many incredible

Kiwis doing this sort of work all across the world was truly inspiring.”

Karepa said the directors of the tour wanted a variety of people, not just those wanting to go on and work for the UN or get into politics.

The focus of his application pitch was his interest in sustainable land use.

After completing a Bachelor of Arts in geography and history, he hopes to study environmental management and bring his skills back to Gisborne.

Four Gisborne students have returned from the experience of a lifetime visiting seven countries as part of the United Nations Youth Global Development Tour. They talk to Kim Parkinson about the life-changing trip . . .

A highlight of the tour for Kyle was the Columbia Model United Nations Conference, where he got to work with other students from around the world. It is one of the premier conferences in the North American high school circuit.

“We were split into committees — it was a crisis group. Some of the crisis situations we were given were fictional and some were historical. There were eight sessions and it was our job as a committee to react and respond to each crisis situation, drafting directives and passing them,” he said.

Vienna especially captivating

“Trying to resolve mock crises as your given character along with 20 other Model UN enthusiasts whilst testing your mooting, debating and public speaking skills could not have been more entertaining.

“That’s what I enjoyed the most — seeing how comfortable I was by the end of it.”

The group visited the New Zealand embassy in New York and the High Commission in London, and saw Kiwis who were working in the field and advocating for New Zealand.

The highlight for Kate was meeting Jan Beagle, the Under-Secretary General of the UN.

“She is an incredible woman from Aotearoa who now holds one of the most senior roles in the United Nations, and she spoke about the importance of empowering women as well as her experience working within the UN for many years.”

They also went to a lot of meetings at social enterprises and NGOs which were trying to implement sustainable development goals around the world.

The itinerary featured plenty of sightseeing, including visits to the 9/11 memorial and museum in New York, Buckingham Palace and Westminster Abbey in London, the Eiffel Tower in Paris, the Colosseum in Rome and many more iconic locations.

“A lot of the things we did were very sobering,” said Kahu, “from visiting the Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp near Berlin to the New York memorial. It was a completely different aspect of the tour that we weren’t prepared for.”

They all found Vienna in Austria especially captivating — impressed by both the architecture and the vibe of the city.

Last year Vienna ousted Melbourne as the No.1 city in the annual Global Liveability Index.
“It had a really nice atmosphere and felt open and spacious,” said Karepa.

“A percentage of the city has to be kept green to feed the population, so they can support themselves in terms of food. And the council owns a lot of the houses, to keep it affordable.

“It seems to be quite successful.”

Kahu said after visiting the other four cities and talking about sustainable development goals, it was great to see this in action in Vienna.

“It was very progressive.”
“Seeing first-hand the amount of work New Zealanders put in, overseas, to achieving the sustainable development goals was inspiring,” said Kyle.

“Outside of Aotearoa, New Zealanders have a reputation of being positive, progressive and righteous.
“While I was overseas, I felt proud to be a New Zealander.”
The students fundraised to help pay for the tour and wanted to acknowledge and thank their sponsors, including Eastland Group.

The trip has made them more appreciative of home.

“We all came back to New Zealand realising how grateful we were to live here,” said Karepa.

Four Gisborne students have returned from the experience of a lifetime visiting seven countries as part of the United Nations Youth Global Development Tour. They talk to Kim Parkinson about the life-changing trip.

Kate Falloon, Kyle Hannah, Karepa Maynard and Kahurangi (Kahu) Rangiuia Lindup visited some of the world’s most famous cities on a study tour which began in New York.

There they attended the Columbia Model United Nations Conference and Exposition at Columbia University’s Morningside Heights campus. They then visited London, Paris, Berlin, Vienna, Rome, and stopped in Hong Kong on the way back to New Zealand.

The UN Global Development Tour is an educational experience for young global citizens where they learn about sustainable development, diplomacy, international relations, and the role of the United Nations in it all.

The former students at Gisborne Girls’ and Boys’ High Schools were part of a 21-strong New Zealand delegation.

The group of high school friends will head to Auckland soon, where they will begin studying at the University of Auckland.

They said they felt inspired by their international experience and were eager to begin tertiary study.

Kate said the directors were looking for people who were passionate about global issues, particularly the Sustainable Development Goals set by the United Nations.

“For me, this trip was an amazing stepping stone towards the line of work I personally hope to follow after tertiary study.

“I have always been passionate about helping people and the world we live in, so being able to meet so many incredible

Kiwis doing this sort of work all across the world was truly inspiring.”

Karepa said the directors of the tour wanted a variety of people, not just those wanting to go on and work for the UN or get into politics.

The focus of his application pitch was his interest in sustainable land use.

After completing a Bachelor of Arts in geography and history, he hopes to study environmental management and bring his skills back to Gisborne.

Four Gisborne students have returned from the experience of a lifetime visiting seven countries as part of the United Nations Youth Global Development Tour. They talk to Kim Parkinson about the life-changing trip . . .

A highlight of the tour for Kyle was the Columbia Model United Nations Conference, where he got to work with other students from around the world. It is one of the premier conferences in the North American high school circuit.

“We were split into committees — it was a crisis group. Some of the crisis situations we were given were fictional and some were historical. There were eight sessions and it was our job as a committee to react and respond to each crisis situation, drafting directives and passing them,” he said.

Vienna especially captivating

“Trying to resolve mock crises as your given character along with 20 other Model UN enthusiasts whilst testing your mooting, debating and public speaking skills could not have been more entertaining.

“That’s what I enjoyed the most — seeing how comfortable I was by the end of it.”

The group visited the New Zealand embassy in New York and the High Commission in London, and saw Kiwis who were working in the field and advocating for New Zealand.

The highlight for Kate was meeting Jan Beagle, the Under-Secretary General of the UN.

“She is an incredible woman from Aotearoa who now holds one of the most senior roles in the United Nations, and she spoke about the importance of empowering women as well as her experience working within the UN for many years.”

They also went to a lot of meetings at social enterprises and NGOs which were trying to implement sustainable development goals around the world.

The itinerary featured plenty of sightseeing, including visits to the 9/11 memorial and museum in New York, Buckingham Palace and Westminster Abbey in London, the Eiffel Tower in Paris, the Colosseum in Rome and many more iconic locations.

“A lot of the things we did were very sobering,” said Kahu, “from visiting the Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp near Berlin to the New York memorial. It was a completely different aspect of the tour that we weren’t prepared for.”

They all found Vienna in Austria especially captivating — impressed by both the architecture and the vibe of the city.

Last year Vienna ousted Melbourne as the No.1 city in the annual Global Liveability Index.
“It had a really nice atmosphere and felt open and spacious,” said Karepa.

“A percentage of the city has to be kept green to feed the population, so they can support themselves in terms of food. And the council owns a lot of the houses, to keep it affordable.

“It seems to be quite successful.”

Kahu said after visiting the other four cities and talking about sustainable development goals, it was great to see this in action in Vienna.

“It was very progressive.”
“Seeing first-hand the amount of work New Zealanders put in, overseas, to achieving the sustainable development goals was inspiring,” said Kyle.

“Outside of Aotearoa, New Zealanders have a reputation of being positive, progressive and righteous.
“While I was overseas, I felt proud to be a New Zealander.”
The students fundraised to help pay for the tour and wanted to acknowledge and thank their sponsors, including Eastland Group.

The trip has made them more appreciative of home.

“We all came back to New Zealand realising how grateful we were to live here,” said Karepa.

The last person from Gisborne to go on the UN Global Development Tour was Te Wai Coulston in 2016, when he was part of the New Zealand delegation at The Hague International Model United Nations. Te Wai remains an active member of UN Youth, a non-profit organisation that provides civics education outside the traditional classroom context.
UN Youth is the youth arm of the United Nations Association of New Zealand, a member of the World Federation of UN Associations. The federation has a consultative status to the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations.
This year’s group is keen to stay involved in UN Youth and encourages others in Gisborne to make the most of any upcoming opportunities with the organisation.

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