UNV celebrates United Nations Day in Bonn
Bonn, Germany: UNV joined the City of Bonn's UN Day celebrations held under the motto “8.0 for development—Water connects!” on Saturday, 19 October 2013. Over 20,000 people, including Germans and foreign nationals, came to the city’s historic market place to celebrate the birthday of the United Nations.
The UN in Bonn tent attracted more than 2,500 visitors where United Nations Volunteers (UNV) programme personnel volunteered, along with colleagues from the other Bonn based UN agencies, to present colourful, often interactive, exhibits about their work. A steady stream of visitors stopped at UNV’s booth where they learned about young Moroccan volunteers using efficient technology to save water under the Community-Based Adaptation project implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) with the technical assistance of UN Volunteers in Morocco as well as about further examples of good practices with UN Volunteers transferring skills and knowledge in water quality analysis and treatment. More information can be found in the new UNV Overview: Providing access to clean water.
Bonn Lord Mayor Jürgen Nimptsch opened the public festival by recognizing the City’s appreciation for the United Nations, adding that work being done by UN agencies in Bonn had a worldwide impact. UNV Executive Coordinator Richard Dictus, representing the UN in Bonn, acknowledged Germany’s continued support and strong commitment to UN issues. "We have become true partners in working together on expanding the Bonn UN site,” he said.
Acknowledging the day’s motto, Mr. Dictus said that water was essential to life, and that its lack, due to drought or lack of access, posed a threat to life and made it impossible for people to maintain their dignity. He said having water was a human right, asserting, “We should address the water challenge together.”
Drawing attention to the nearby Rhine River, the UNV EC concluded by saying, “Water flows through the UN entities in Bonn. We look forward to working further with the Mayor and the local community in the future.”
At the UNV booth, visitors could pick up various hand-outs on the organization and its volunteering initiatives for peace and sustainable development and ask UNV personnel questions on how to become a UN Volunteer or a UN Online Volunteer. Visitors could also fill in the 18 questions of the Water Quiz developed by the UN in Bonn to test the public’s knowledge of water issues and the work of Bonn based UN organizations. There visitors could find the answer to UNV’s question on the quiz. How well would you do? Of the almost 7,000 UN Volunteers deployed in 2012, how many worked in the area of water or water and sanitation? A. 15 B. 73 C. 2,310. The answer is at the end of this article.
As well, visitors could fill out and hand in MY World survey forms and so participate in the global survey which is asking people to set priorities for a better world by choosing six of 16 issues that would make a difference in their lives.
UN Day is celebrated globally to highlight the aims and achievements of the United Nations. The day marks the anniversary of the signing of the UN Charter on 24 October 1945 and has been observed annually in Bonn since 1996, when UNV moved, as the first UN organization, from Geneva, Switzerland to Bonn.
More pictures here: www.flickr.com/photos/95054816@N05/sets/72157636831823393/
UN Day Water Quiz answer: B. 73
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