News — August 31, 2015
Delegates Collaborate for Sustainable Impact at 2015 Global Partnership Summit
From July 28 to 31, nearly 500 members, partners and friends came together in New York City, USA to collaborate for sustained impact around the world, as JCI continues the celebration of its centennial year.
The 2015 JCI Global Partnership Summit focused on the search for solutions to global issues as the target-deadline for the Millennium Development Goals approaches and the world awaits the adoption of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in September. Held at the United Nations Headquarters and the Grand Hyatt Hotel next to Grand Central Station, this year’s Summit inspired delegates to return to their homes with a renewed sense of responsibility, knowledge and ignited passion for the prosperity of their communities and their world in 2015 and beyond.
Looking Forward to Building a Sustainable Future
The Official Opening of the 2015 Global Partnership Summit kicked off at the Roosevelt Hotel featuring speeches by JCI President Ismail Haznedar, JCI Secretary General Arrey Obenson, 2015 JCI Global Partnership Summit Chairperson Hiroyoshi Ishizaki, 2015 JCI USA National President Jennifer Ray and special guest and Managing Director of The B Team, Rajiv Joshi.
Joshi spoke on the importance of businesses changing their mentality from advancing their success to advancing and collaborating to better their communities and the world in which we live in. Joshi expressed the need for everyone worldwide to champion the agenda and bring awareness to advancing the SDGs. “The power of the SDGs are that they are universal, they require responsibilities and action by all businesses, they need action by all people, young and old,” said Joshi.
The next morning, inspiration and motivation hit the stage during the New York City Edition of the JCI Morning Show. Dynamic leaders including United Nations Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth Ahmad Alhendawi and Permanent Resident to the United Nations Louise Kantrow took to the stage to discuss key issues ranging from poverty reduction to reserving climate change and further expressed the importance of adopting the SDGs; Kantrow stated: “When representing the SDG’s, nobody can do everything, but everyone can do something.” The engaging show also included President of 100 Resilient Cities Michael Berkowitz who is proactive in working across all sectors to making the world a better place. He described resilient cities as cities that are capable of not only surviving natural disasters, but also pressures like poverty and unemployment. HeForShe Spokesperson and MSNBC/NBC News Anchor, Richard Lui closed the JCI Morning Show by stating the need for social equality in the world we live in today. “Gender equality and domestic violence is a human problem, not a women versus man problem…this is about human rights,” said Lui.
Following the JCI Morning Show, Previous JCI TOYP Honorees, Katherine Sparkes and Nicholás Garcia Mayor were featured in the Connecting Creativity, Innovation and Technology for Sustainable Solutions Panel Discussion alongside President of AIESEC International, Ana Saldarriaga. The panel moderated by Editor of the UN Dispatch, Mark Leon Goldberg, discussed how collaborations of global young people, especially through the vast amount of worldwide technology, will lead toward sustainable impact. All members of this panel also discussed the importance of using technology to evaluate and share information, as evaluation is the key to understanding how we impact the world. “The best solutions come from those suffering from the problems themselves, it's about listening, collaborating and learning,” said Sparkes.
To end the morning session, entrepreneur and angel investor, Baybars Altuntas, delivered a special keynote on how business ideas and entrepreneurship serve as sustainable solutions to the challenges of today. Following his empowering keynote, JCI President Ismail Haznedar appointed Altuntas as a JCI Ambassador, which is granted to individuals who help spread the JCI Mission and vision globally.
Later that afternoon, delegates and special Summit guests participated in the JCI Interactive Poverty Simulation. This simulation provided a glimpse into the day-to-day realities of life in poverty. Each participant was assigned a role in a low-income family and was challenged to fulfill their role, going to school or work and caring for their family and themselves on limited resources. Learning firsthand that one person living in poverty is one person without human dignity, participants committed to take action to break the cycle of poverty back home in their own communities.
A Resolution for Progress at the UN
The first day of meetings taking place at the United Nations started off with a session on Taking Charge of the Sustainable Development Goals. Strategic Adviser Partnership to Assistant Secretary-General and Deputy Executive Director for UN Women, Ravi Karkara explored the proposed SDGs as well as led interactive activities with the audience to help develop ideas on how young people can take ownership of these future goals in their area. “Some say there are too many goals, but they are all interconnected. The SDGs are a framework to clarify the global issues,” said Karkara. Following his interactive session, JCI President Haznedar also honored Karkara as a JCI Ambassador.
Following the session on the SDGs, a panel composed of Assistant Director for Civil Society Partnerships for the U.S. Fund for UNICEF Rachel Steinberg, UN Global Compact Senior Advisor and JCI Ambassador Fred Dubee, Executive Vice President of the Turkish Heritage Organization Ali Cinar and the Youth Minister of Zambia Ronald K. Chitotela came together to explore the challenges and opportunities for educating and empowering the next generation.
The focus of the day continued around the SDGs and how individuals and communities can focus on creating a better future by 2030. The Peace, Prosperity and Sustaining the Future session focused on that exact message. Speakers included President-elect of Kiwanis International Susan Petrisin, Deputy Director for Policy for the UN Millennium Campaign Sering Falu Njie, Founder of EMMA for Peace Paolo Petrocelli and Director for Sustainable Development in the Bureau for Policy and Director for Sustainable Development, Bureau for Policy and Programme Support Nik Sekhran.
Later that afternoon, delegates were encouraged to share their voice and ideas in the 2015 JCI Global Partnership Resolution. Discussions and constructive debates were held to develop a resolution focused around the future SDGs that will help move us into the next era of sustainable development. Discover the 2015 JCI Global Partnership Resolution today.
Delegates heard from Commercial Real Estate Executive, Winthrop E. Baum at the close of Thursday’s fully packed sessions. Baum joined by Petrocelli discussed how JCI’s international partnerships can transcend to the local level for action and impact.
On the final day of the JCI Global Partnership Summit, Deputy Director for Nothing But Nets Margaret Reilly McDonnell, spoke on how individuals and organizations can not only fundraise but also advocate their local and national governments to support actions that aid in the fight against malaria.
Delegates were able to see their input put into action during Collaboration for a Sustainable Future: Presenting the 2015 JCI Global Partnership Summit Resolution and JCI and the Millennium Development Goals, a publication featuring a selection of 100 projects from around the world that advanced the MDGs, in honor of the JCI 100th Anniversary; it was also an action step in the 2014 Summit resolution. The MDG report was presented and accepted by Kim Won-soo, Under Secretary General and Acting High Representative for Disarmament Affairs for the UN.
In coordination with the Summit and staying youth focused, JCI hosted an initial launch of the Global Youth Empowerment Fund on the last day. The Fund, in collaboration with the UN Millennium Campaign, will financially support grassroots projects and business startups that advance the SDGs through the JCI Active Citizen Framework. “We have this amazing, untapped renewable resource and that is youth energy,” said Mitchell Toomey, Director of the UN Millennium Campaign. The full launch of the Global Youth Empowerment Fund will take place at World Congress in Kanazawa, Japan in November.
Following a closing reception presented by JCI South Africa at the Hard Rock Cafe Times Square, attendees departed and made plans to attend next year’s Summit while enjoying words from American Television Anchor, Joya Dass and Mudunwazi Baloyi of Brand South Africa.
Don’t miss out on the next chance to collaborate at the 2015 JCI World Congress in Kanazawa, Japan! Register now!