The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO today announced the winners of its inaugural Award in Global Citizenship Education (GCED).
The recipients are: Patea Area School (Education Sector), Generation Zero (Community) and Tiaki Early Learning Centre (Innovation). St Johns College and UN Youth were also highly commended.
Each winner will receive a certificate and $3000 at a prize giving ceremony and reception at Parliament, hosted by Hon Jenny Salesa, Associate Minister of Education.
“We were delighted by the quality of the applications we received,” says Robyn Baker, Chair of the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO. “It was heartening to read about the outstanding work that is being done across the country to encourage responsible and active global citizenship.”
Patea Area School – Education Sector Award
Each term the school introduces an across school inquiry topic with a local/global challenge focus. Every student in the school chooses an aspect of the inquiry topic based on their area of interest, passion and need. This inquiry work becomes the basis of each students’ personalised learning pathway.
Patea Area School worked to find a learning model that truly embedded global citizenship in the whole school’s curriculum delivery, instead of being a one-off project. This is reflected in the school’s vision statement of ‘Growing good people for a changing world’. The school’s approach is closely aligned with international goals for global citizenship education and the Sustainable Development Goals.
“In 2015, Patea Area School had some of the worst NCEA results in the country,” says Ms Baker. “They also had high suspension rates, low staff morale and a significant disconnection with the local community. The judges were impressed at how the learning model the school introduced has turned the school around and engaged the whole community. The model ensures that everything they do as a learning community is experiential, authentic and connected to the wider world around them.”
Generation Zero – Community Award
Generation Zero developed the Zero Carbon Act blueprint, aimed at creating a thriving, zero carbon future in New Zealand.
The nationwide, youth-led organisation taught themselves and others about policy and government processes, media and communications, public outreach, interpersonal skills, training and supporting volunteers to get involved and upskill as well.
After 18 months of public education and awareness-building about climate change and the benefits of climate law, the new government agreed to create and pass a Zero Carbon Act into law. The work of Generation Zero contributed to this outcome.
“The judges were particularly struck by the strong evidence of impact and its contribution to long-term societal change, as well as the fact that the initiative is youth led,” says Ms Baker. “They were also impressed by the way in which members of Generation Zero are educating volunteers across the country.”
Tiaki Early Learning Centre – Innovation Award
The Centre’s project ‘Te Arohanui o Papatuanuku’ provides opportunities for tamariki aged between three and five to lead by example in their role as Kaitiaki o Papatuanuku – guardians of the land. The young children are encouraged to act as leaders in projects to reduce waste and foster sustainable living practice. This includes picking up litter as they walk through the community, and looking after a section of wetlands in the local area, among other projects.
“The judges were excited by the early learning centre’s approach, which is embedding important values in the tamariki that will likely grow as they get older,” says Ms Baker. “It’s a simple but powerful idea, which adopts innovative use of local knowledge and tikanga.”
The early learning centre is working with the local community to establish and sustain the Tiaki way of being in the world; drawing on Te Whariki, ideas of place-based education, using Nature pedagogy, and enabling the children to take action in areas related to the health of mother earth. They are also providing opportunities for the children to be leaders “through the actions they do every single day”.
About Global Citizenship Education
The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO’s definition of Global Citizenship Education (GCED) is ‘empowering learners to engage and assume active roles, both locally and globally, to face and resolve global challenges and ultimately to become proactive contributors to a more just, peaceful, tolerant, inclusive, secure and sustainable world’.
GCED is for learners of any ages, from both formal and non-formal settings.
UNESCO’s work in this area is guided by the Education 2030 Agenda and Framework for Action, notably Target 4.7 of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG 4 on Education), which calls on countries to: “ensure that all learners are provided with the knowledge and skills to promote sustainable development, including, among others, through education for sustainable development and sustainable lifestyles, human rights, gender equality, promotion of a culture of peace and non-violence, global citizenship and appreciation of cultural diversity and of culture’s contribution to sustainable development.”
The judges selected the projects that aligned best with the National Commission’s definition of GCED, as well as Target 4.7. Applicants needed to demonstrate that their project contributes to a significant issue/s at a local, regional or national level. They also needed to provide evidence of their project’s impact on learners’ ability to be active and responsible global citizens.
News and Events
The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO today announced the winners of its inaugural Award in Global Citizenship Education (GCED).
Dr Geoff Hicks with Joanne Perry from the Department of Conservation, New Zealand head of the delegation to IPBES.
Biodiversity – the essential variety of life forms on Earth – continues to decline in every region of the world, significantly reducing nature’s capacity to contribute to people’s wellbeing. This alarming trend endangers economies, livelihoods, food security and the quality of life of people everywhere, according to four landmark regional science reports released at the 6th Plenary of the Intergovernmental science-policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES) in Medellin, Colombia in March.
The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO provided funding for Dr Geoff Hicks to participate as an expert advisor to the New Zealand delegation at the plenary.
“The Platform was in good heart as the reports provide a strong knowledge base for global action,” says Dr Hicks. “There was also a sense of urgency and cohesion amongst the 129 nations represented to get stuck in and implement the findings.”
The science reports that were released at the plenary, written by more than 550 leading experts from over 100 countries, is the result of three years of work. The four regional assessments of biodiversity and ecosystem services cover the Americas, Asia and the Pacific, Africa, as well as Europe and Central Asia – the entire planet except the poles and the open oceans. IPBES also released an assessment report on land degradation and restoration.
Trafalgar Street, Queen Victoria Jubilee, 1887. Nelson Provincial Museum, Tyree Studio Collection: 181975
The UNESCO Memory of the World New Zealand Trust is calling for Expressions of Interest for new inscriptions to the New Zealand register by 30 April 2018.
Advantages of an inscription on the register include:
- ensuring that our history and our stories are not forgotten
- highlighting the significance of the information /knowledge contained in collections
- recognition by an independent organisation (UNESCO)
- public recognition of the importance of documentary heritage
- publicity and promotion for your institution
- to be part of an international network of the most important documentary heritage in the world
- increased possibility of attracting resources (to care for, preserve and promote the collection)
- raised awareness of the work done by custodians of documentary heritage.
The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO is delighted to announce the establishment of a UNESCO Global Geoparks programme in New Zealand.
“This will bring global recognition to areas of internationally significant geology in New Zealand that meet UNESCO’s criteria,” says Dr Geoff Hicks, Natural Sciences Commissioner, New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO (pictured).
The National Commission has appointed a Geoparks Expert Advisory Panel to encourage and support New Zealand nominations for UNESCO Global Geopark status. Expressions of interest are open until April 2018 and shortlisted applicants will then be invited to develop a full dossier.
The National Commission is able to recommend up to two New Zealand candidates per year for Global Geopark status. The full application process, including assessment by UNESCO, can potentially take a number of years.
“Climate action is not only a moral responsibility, it is a necessity for human survival.”
From left: Libby Giles, Ronja Ievers, Mareike Hachemer.
This was one of the key takeaway messages Ronja Ievers and Libby Giles took from the 23rd meeting of the Conference of the Parties (COP 23) of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in Bonn, Germany.
The pair received minor grant funding from the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO to attend the conference, with Ronja attending in week one and Libby in week two. The conference was held under the presidency of the government of Fiji, the first time a small island nation has served in this role.
A three-day workshop in Bangkok, Thailand has set Special Advisor Youth Danielle Newton on a new path – to live more sustainably and to empower others to do the same.
Danielle was selected to attend the Asia-Pacific Regional Workshop for Youth Leadership Training on Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) from 15-17 November. The workshop is part of a series of youth training taking place globally under the Global Action Programme on Education for Sustainable Development. It aims to create a network of active youth leaders who are mobilising others to take action for sustainability.
“This workshop was incredibly valuable for building professional and personal networks, particularly with leaders from the Pacific,” says Danielle. “It really inspired a lot of personal reflection and commitment to make changes in my own life and lead by example.”
The training included two online sessions and a three-day workshop. During the workshop, participants went on an experiential field trip to the Bang Krachao “Green Lung” community, an urban oasis alongside Bangkok’s Chao Phraya River.
Report by Vicki Soanes, Secretary General, New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO
The biennial UNESCO General Conference was held in Paris between 30 October and 14 November.
The New Zealand delegation was led by the Chair of the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO Robyn Baker, and included New Zealand’s Permanent Delegate to UNESCO, Charles Kingston, his Deputy Emma Delage, National Commission Secretary General Vicki Soanes, and Culture Commissioner Dr Arapata Hakiwai, who joined the delegation for the second week to cover the Culture Commission.
The UNESCO General Conference brings together UNESCO’s 195 Member States and 10 Associate Members, together with observers, intergovernmental organisations and NGOs. The Member States make decisions on a range of agenda items, including the adoption of the Programme and Budget. Other decisions taken during the General Conference include a revision of the Recommendation on the Status of Scientific Researchers, a Declaration on the Ethical Principles of Climate Change and a resolution on strengthening UNESCO leadership in the implementation of the ‘UN Plan of Action on Safety of Journalists and the Issue of Impunity’.
Seven new inscriptions have been added to the UNESCO Memory of the World New Zealand register.
Memory of the World New Zealand Trust Chair Dianne Macaskill announced the new inscriptions at a function at Auckland Libraries on 29 November.
There are now 27 documentary heritage collections on the New Zealand register. Each is a valuable source of research for historians, researchers, educators and many others in New Zealand and the world.
UNESCO recognition draws attention to the significance of documentary heritage and the importance of ensuring it is preserved and made accessible.
The successful inscriptions are:
J.T. Diamond Collection (nominated by Auckland Libraries)
The personal archive of John (Jack) Thomas Diamond MBE. As a self-described amateur historian and archeologist, Jack documented the history of West Auckland over a time of significant change from the 1930s to the 1980s.
Ng New Zealand Chinese Heritage Collection (nominated by the Presbyterian Research Centre, Dunedin)
A collection of documents gathered since 1959 by Dr James Ng and his wife Eva Ng which sheds considerable light on 19th and early 20th Century Chinese history in New Zealand.
Report by Sarah Morris, Learning Experience Manager, Wellington Zoo Trust
The New Zealand National Commission provided minor grant funding to Wellington Zoo’s Rangatahi Roots & Shoots programme. Sarah Morris provides an update on how the pilot programme is going so far.
As part of the Zoo revolution we have been piloting a Rangatahi Roots & Shoots for young people who are passionate about animals, people and the environment (A.P.E.). Because these three things are vital to all of us, they can be used as a common building block to unite communities.
The rangatahi participate in a variety of activities both inside and outside of the Zoo. Participants get the opportunity to learn about many aspects of our Zoo, while the Zoo benefits from having access to a group of young people with energy, motivation and a genuine interest in taking action on the mounting issues their generation face.
Communication and Information Commissioner Trish Carter (pictured left) attended an Auckland ceremony on 2 November, held in honour of clinical researcher Dr Matire Harwood, winner of a prestigious fellowship in the L'Oréal UNESCO For Women in Science programme.
Dr Harwood received the $250,000 fellowship for her research in addressing the inequities of health related outcomes between indigenous and non-indigenous people. Her research is important to the 400 million indigenous people around the world and it could improve their health outcomes not only in New Zealand but also internationally.
“Indigenous health and wellbeing is an international priority, with long-term conditions the biggest contributor to life expectancy gaps worldwide,” says Dr Harwood. “Achieving equity within health and wellbeing will have a positive impact on the lives of patients, as well as for the community, the nation and the world over.
Dunedin UNESCO City of Literature is holding a Creative Cities Southern Hui from Tuesday 28 November to Saturday 2 December.
The collaborative event, sponsored by the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO and held in partnership with the University of Otago’s Centre for the Book, is free and open to all, with registration essential.
The Hui offers events, talks and workshops around the themes of creativity, connection and collaboration. Each event is open to all creative minds; an opportunity to foster creative connections through all disciplines and interests.
The Hui programme includes:
- Centre for the Book: Books and Users, a day of presentations and discussions, exploring the many ways we interact with books, and probing the meaning of ‘user’
- Creative Connections aims to explore creativity as the touchstone of healthy and sustainable communities, and celebrate the power of collaboration to inspire. The wealth of exciting keynote speakers includes Steven Edmund Winduo (Papua New Guinea), Anna Maria Lorusso (Bologna UNESCO City of Music), and Noel Waite (Melbourne UNESCO City of Literature)
- Transitions and Transformations is a participatory workshop, facilitated by Noel Waite, inviting creative minds to identify ways to collaborate and develop sustainable creative partnerships.
The immaculate heritage restoration of two Arts Centre buildings has received an Award of Merit in the prestigious UNESCO Asia-Pacific Awards for Cultural Heritage Conservation.
It’s the fourth time a New Zealand project has been recognised by the awards, with the Arts Centre taking out honours in a field of 43 projects from 10 countries.
It received the award for the post-earthquake restoration of two of the site’s most historically valuable buildings – the Great Hall and Clock Tower.
Judged by an international panel of conservation experts, a total of 16 awards were presented to diverse projects from six countries – the others being from Australia, China, India, Iran and Singapore.
Auckland has become a City of Music, joining the UNESCO Creative Cities Network.
Auckland’s successful bid, along with 11 other music cities worldwide, was announced by UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova on 31 October.
“The UNESCO Creative Cities Network is at the frontline of UNESCO’s efforts to foster innovation and creativity as key drivers for a more sustainable and inclusive urban development,” says Robyn Baker, Chair of the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO.
“We warmly congratulate Auckland Council on its successful bid.”
Councillor Alf Filipaina, a staunch supporter of the bid made by Auckland Council working with Recorded Music NZ and APRA (Australasian Performing Right Association), is thrilled to share Auckland’s distinctive sound with the world and strengthen music opportunities in the city.
"From indie folk and brass bands to waiata aroha, the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra and Lorde, there’s no doubt music is a part of us. It goes right to Auckland’s roots, with waiata woven into our history and everyday culture," he says.
"Supporting Auckland as a creative city and growing our music industry will enrich city life, the cultural landscape and build community identity and liveability for all Aucklanders.
The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO is delighted to announce the six new members of our Youth Reference Group: Shaymaaa Arif, Injy Johnstone, Peter McKenzie, Ashlee Peacock, Nola Smart and Charlotte Steel.
“We received applications from 100 incredibly talented young people and it was a very difficult decision to narrow them down to six,” says Libby Frampton, an advisor in the National Commission’s Secretariat who is responsible for the youth portfolio.
The Youth Reference Group is chaired by the Special Advisor – Youth (currently Danielle Newton) and provides advice to the National Commission on how to engage young people in UNESCO’s work programmes.
Shaymaa (22) recently graduated with a Law and Social Sciences degree from Waikato University and is now a qualified barrister and solicitor. Her achievements include being selected for the Aotearoa Youth Leadership Institution Delegation for the World Heritage Committee 41st Session in Poland, representing Te Piringa Faculty of Law in the National International Humanitarian Law Mooting Competition in Wellington, and being selected for the Delegation of New Zealand for the prestigious Shop for World Youth Programme in 2016. She received the Waikato Student Unions Scholarship for Cultural Contribution 2016 and was a 2015 finalist in the Westpac New Zealand Women of Influence Awards in the ‘Young Leader’ Category. She is also a Trustee of the family-founded Charitable Trust ‘Tamariki Outreach’, which sponsors Syrian orphans and helps the local community through aiding vulnerable members as well as connecting the Muslim community with the non-Muslim community.
The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO is seeking to reward projects that foster global citizenship through its inaugural Global Citizenship Education (GCED) Award.
Applicants from the education sector and community groups are invited to tell the National Commission about their global citizenship education projects or develop new ones between now and March 2018 to be in to win cash prizes.
“GCED aims to empower learners to assume active roles to face and resolve global challenges and to become proactive contributors to a more peaceful, tolerant, inclusive and secure world,” says Robyn Baker, Chair of the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO.
Around 300 children in the Wellington region aged 5-12 got a taste of democracy in action during the General Election thanks to the efforts of independent theatre company Barbarian Productions.
With support from the National Commission, the group set up a mock polling station at Vogelmorn Bowling Club and invited children to cast their vote and campaign for what they believed in. Children from local schools also visited during the lead up to the election.
"With the Kids’ Polling Booth we wanted to offer children an opportunity to experience firsthand the embodied experience of voting – actually going into the booth and making the choice for themselves, then posting into the ballot box,” says Head Clown Thomas LaHood.
“We also wanted to create a space encouraging children to come forward with their own ideas, concerns and political voices. We are always very inspired working with children, and especially so in these areas of civic rights and responsibilities and social values.”
The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO has awarded six grants worth $125,550 in total in its UNESCO’s 2017/2018 Contestable Funding Round.
The successful projects range from a collaborative wānanga aimed at finding solutions for kauri dieback and wider forest ecosystem conservation to a youth project focused on building the capacity of young people to make a positive difference in their communities, to a pilot programme for Peace Week.
“We received a number of excellent proposals but the six we selected most strongly reflected our mission and strategic priorities, and have the potential to lead to positive long-term change at a national or regional level,” says Robyn Baker, Chair of the National Commission.
“We’re excited about sharing the outcomes of these projects.”
Representatives of the National Commission attended the Iwi Chairs Forum in Whakatane on 3 August, hosted by Ngati Awa at Te Manuka Tūtahi Marae.
Thanks to an introduction facilitated by Social Sciences Commissioner Materoa Dodd, Chair Robyn Baker and Culture Commissioner Dr Arapata Hakiwai were invited to profile UNESCO and share the current priorities and work programme of the National Commission at the Forum.
The Forum is a platform for sharing knowledge and information between the tangata whenua of Aotearoa, with hui four times a year hosted at different marae throughout the country. The primary focus is for participants to educate one another about what they are doing, how they are doing it and how they can best support one another.
Two members of our Youth Reference Group, Teina Wells-Smith and Danielle Newton, did an excellent job of representing the National Commission in August. Below are the activities they have been involved in.
Nga Rangatahi A Iwi forum
Teina Wells-Smith attended the Nga Rangatahi A Iwi (NRAI) forum. This was part of the Iwi Chairs Forum, which is an opportunity for Māori from different iwi to share information and aspirations around topics of cultural, environmental, social, economic and political development.
NRAI participants are young Māori representatives of their iwi. As part of the day Teina joined a group discussion about Pou Taiao (environment), where they brainstormed ideas around barriers that prevent rangatahi (young people) from connecting themselves to the environment through kaitiakitanga (guardianship).
Teina says he came away from the day inspired and with invaluable connections to future iwi leaders.
Are you aged between 18 and 25 and want to take action to promote peace and social justice in New Zealand and the Pacific? Then we want to hear from you.
The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO is recruiting new members for its UNESCO NZ Youth Reference Group (YRG) to advise us on an ongoing basis.
UNESCO (the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation) is the global organisation that contributes to the building of peace, sustainable development, intercultural dialogue and the eradication of poverty through the five programme areas of education, the sciences, culture, communication and information.
The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO works through these five areas within the context of New Zealand and the Pacific.
Hearing the voice of youth within our work is vital, so we are looking for people who have:
- a strong commitment to the UNESCO ideals
- knowledge and interest in at least one of five programme areas of UNESCO
- demonstrable interest in activities or organisations involving youth
- an understanding of youth issues
- the availability to actively participate and commit to the work of UNESCO and
- the ability to express views clearly at meetings.
Successful applicants will form a group chaired by the Special Advisor – Youth that provides advice to the National Commission. During the year, there will be up to three National Commission meetings in Wellington that you must attend. You will also need to be available on email to communicate with the Youth Advisor and the Secretariat. Terms are either for one year or two years.
If you want be part of the UNESCO NZ Youth Reference Group, send your one page expression of interest (including current occupation, area of interest and reasons for wishing to contribute to the values of UNESCO) and your CV as soon as possible but no later than Monday 21 August 2017.
Note: This is an unpaid role, although all associated expenses will be covered. The role requires domestic and possibly some international travel.
The winners of the Imagining Decolonised Cities (IDC) contest, supported by our last round of contestable funding, were announced in May. Chair Robyn Baker attended a prizegiving of one of the winning teams (Runner Up Under 18) this month, comprising four high school students from Te Kura Kaupapa Māori o Ngā Mokopuna in Wellington — (pictured from left with Robyn Baker) Paige Scruton Nepe Apatu, Watene Campbell, Christian Mauriri and Te Hoera Sullivan (absent). Submissions to the contest can now be viewed on the IDC website.
The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO is calling for Expressions of Interest for its contestable funding round by 30 June.
Applications are primarily being sought for ‘major grant’ funding from $15,000 to the level of $40,000. Minor grant funding is also available for amounts under $5,000.
“We are seeking innovative projects, events, programmes or initiatives that reflect our mission and strategic priorities,” says Robyn Baker, Chair of the National Commission.
“As UNESCO is an organisation of ‘ideas’, we are especially interested in projects that demonstrate new ways of working and which have the potential to lead to positive long-term change at a national or regional level.”
Representatives from 10 South Pacific countries gathered in Auckland in May for a capacity building workshop on intangible cultural heritage.
Organised by the International Training Centre for Intangible Cultural Heritage in the Asia-Pacific Region (CRIHAP) under the auspices of UNESCO Apia Office and supported by the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO, the workshop was based on the ratification and implementation of the 2003 Convention for the Safeguarding of Intangible Cultural Heritage.
A UNESCO treaty, the 2003 Convention is aimed at safeguarding the uses, representations, expressions, knowledge and techniques that communities and groups (and in some cases individuals) recognise as an integral part of their cultural heritage. This intangible heritage can be found in forms such as oral traditions, performing arts, social practices, rituals, festive events, knowledge and practices concerning nature and the universe, and traditional craftsmanship knowledge and techniques.
How can young people make a difference in their natural environments?
Nature Through Arts Collective is enabling young people and their families to learn about and get involved in some of New Zealand’s critical conservation challenges through a series of dynamic and imaginative digital journeys at nature sites.
Supported by the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO, the project explores new ways for young people to have an active voice and become innovative thinkers in sustainable development. Creative and artistic activity, innovative technology and immersion in nature are combined to empower a wide community of adventurers who can be both virtual and real ‘super-heroes’ in their own backyards and reserves.
The project builds on the success of the Collective’s recent pilot ‘Imagine My City 100 Day creative challenge’, also supported by the National Commission. This was a community-based project to ignite the imaginations and dreams of young people for a neighbourhood full of nature.
It was the National Commission’s great pleasure to welcome the Assistant Director General Natural Sciences, Dr Flavia Schlegel to New Zealand in March.
Dr Schlegel was in New Zealand as part of a three week visit to the Pacific region, participating in a workshop organised by the International Network for Government Science Advice in Auckland and the 150th anniversary celebrations of the New Zealand Royal Society in Wellington.
What is global citizenship education? Why is it important? And how do we encourage New Zealanders from all walks of life and at all ages to become responsible and active global citizens?
The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO is holding an evening seminar in Wellington on Monday 22 May from 5.30-7pm, featuring:
- Libby Giles (Global Citizenship Education facilitator, member of the New Zealand Centre for Global Studies (NZCGS) and the Alliance for Responsible and Sustainable Societies)
- Scarlett Parkes (Auckland Girls’ Grammar Deputy Head Girl, co-author of an International Youth White Paper on Global Citizenship)
- Cheryl Stephens (education specialist; National Commissioner for Education, NZ National Commission for UNESCO).
Don't miss this opportunity to hear from three individuals from diverse backgrounds who are passionate about helping people become engaged global citizens.
Children’s books created by Dunedin authors and illustrators were showcased at the iconic Bologna Children’s Book Fair earlier this month, thanks to a successful bid for a free stand by the Dunedin UNESCO City of Literature.
Bologna UNESCO City of Music invited the 116 UNESCO Creative Cities to apply, and the literary city’s proposal was selected.
Director City of Literature Nicky Page says, “Winning the stand means we were able showcase our wonderful local writers and illustrators and provide a hub for New Zealand children’s books at a trade fair that attracts tens of thousands of publishing industry players worldwide.”
Former Beeby Fellow Jesse Pirini launched his book Peer Tutoring: A training and facilitation guide at the end of March.
Developed during his Beeby Fellowship, the book provides practical, research-based strategies for anyone wanting to run a peer tutoring programme or to improve their own tutoring practice.
“Jesse’s work is the perfect match for the National Commission’s goal of providing equitable access to education,” said National Commission Chair Robyn Baker in her speech at the launch. “His resource aims to make tutoring programmes more accessible, particularly in communities where there are a scarcity of resources. By helping communities develop and sustain their own tutoring programmes, his work benefits students whose families can’t afford private tuition fees.
A standing ovation at an international UNESCO forum in March made the culmination of many months and long hours of work all worthwhile for 17-year-old Auckland Girls’ Grammar deputy head girl Scarlett Parkes.
The driven year 13 student co-wrote an international youth White Paper on Global Citizenship with youth teams from 11 different countries, collaborating virtually across multiple time zones.
Scarlett was one of 10 representatives who travelled to Ottawa, Canada to complete the finishing touches and present the paper at the Third UNESCO Forum on Global Citizenship Education.
The National Commission shone the spotlight on global citizenship education in March, funding three representatives to attend the Third UNESCO Forum on Global Citizenship Education in Ottawa, Canada. Education Commissioner Cheryl Stephens attended, along with teacher and global citizenship advisor Libby Giles and Year 13 student Scarlett Parkes from Auckland Girls’ Grammar who co-wrote and presented an International Youth White Paper on Global Citizenship with an international team of young people.
Drawing together around 500 participants from all regions of the world, the forum connected to discussions, activities and events in UNESCO’s week for Peace and Sustainable Development: The Role of Education.
The National Commission strengthened its Pacific connections with a visit to the UNESCO Office for the Pacific States in Apia in March.
Chair Robyn Baker and Secretary General Vicki Soanes were hosted by the newly appointed Director of the UNESCO Apia office, Ms Nisha over three days. During their visit they participated in a series of meetings with UNESCO specialists in each of the programme areas.
“It was a great opportunity to discuss and exchange UNESCO’s work and the National Commission’s priorities, investigating possible work together,” says Vicki. “Our strategic focus prioritises the Pacific region, so being able to build our relationships in this way is invaluable.”
Seventeen ‘larger than life’ women dancing in the streets of Palmerston North caused a sensation at the city’s International Women’s Day Parade on 8 March.
The Big Girl giant puppets, designed to celebrate diversity in Aotearoa, represented women from a wide range of communities, including Latin America, South East Asia, Syria, Japan and Samoa. Some had been created collectively this year by women in Palmerston North and the Wellington region through workshops run by Rangiwahia Environmental Arts Centre Trust (REACT) and funded by the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO.
Robyn Baker attended her first event as Chair of the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO at the observance of United Nations International Holocaust Remembrance Day in Wellington on 27 January.
The serene rural surroundings at the Jewish Cemetery, Makara, were backdrop for the event, where Robyn and other dignitaries laid commemorative stones.
In breezy sunshine, Mayor of Wellington Justin Lester, German Ambassador H E Gerhard Thiedemann, and Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy made strong statements on upping the opposition to hate speech, as well as the need for remembrance to also include personal commitment to individual action.
A major theme was the 70 years since the 1947 Nuremberg trials of doctors and lawyers who were complicit in Nazi Germany’s devastating anti-Jewish policies.
The German ambassador referred to those trials, their influence on subsequent international law, and the setting up of the International Nuremberg Principles Academy. It is dedicated to the promotion of international criminal justice and human rights.
“In a world today that seems darker, with hate and intolerance on the rise, it’s easy to fear that we are forgetting the hard won lessons of history,” said Mayor Justin Lester. “All of us have a moral responsibility to stand up to hate, to intolerance, to injustice. We all have a role to play.”
Literature continues to be a vibrant part of Dunedin life. Here’s a taste of what’s been happening in the UNESCO City of Literature lately, and a preview of the year ahead.
Poems in the Waiting Room
The Poems in the Waiting Room (NZ) project, based in Dunedin, distributes 8000 free poetry cards every season to medical waiting rooms, rest homes, hospices and prisons throughout New Zealand. The three-fold brightly coloured cards usually contain eight poems, including one for children and a haiku. Poets and publishers from Dunedin and the world over, including Bloodaxe Books and Faber & Faber, have generously loaned requested poems for each edition.
A major project aimed at assessing and improving water quality in Samoa has been in operation this year, with support from the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO.
A team of researchers from Massey University’s Pacific Research and Policy Centre have been working with Pacific Island researchers led by Patila Amosa from the National University of Samoa (NUS) to collect and analyse water samples. Their findings will provide baseline standards for the Ministry of Natural Resources and Environment in Samoa to routinely assess water quality and develop management strategies that ensure communities, especially the young, are safe when using natural water bodies.
The Beeby Fellowship for 2016-2017 has been won by a university researcher and a secondary school teacher, who will collaborate on a mental health education teaching resource for students in Years 7-13.
Associate Professor Katie Fitzpatrick (pictured left), an internationally recognised authority in health education from the University of Auckland, and Kat Wells, head of the health and physical education faculty at Lynfield College, Auckland, have been announced as the co-Beeby Fellows, following a selection process.
The fellowship, worth $30,000, will enable them to write a resource book for teachers on mental health and hauora, which is an area of health education that is currently under-resourced. A recent youth health survey highlighted concerns about depression, deliberate self-harm and suicidal thoughts in the 13-18 age group.
The book will provide practical information for teachers on educating students about resilience, interpersonal skills and wellbeing. It will also help students gain the skills to communicate effectively, reflect on their needs and wellbeing, and develop resilience, stress management tools and anti-bullying strategies.
A major pest control operation that has required three years of planning is underway in the Antipodes Island, one of the Sub-Antarctic Islands UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Called ‘Million Dollar Mouse’, the project is one of the most complex island eradication operations ever attempted by the Department of Conservation (DOC). It has faced a number of logistical challenges, including the island’s remote location, unpredictable weather and lack of harbour for shelter when loading and unloading ships. Despite this, DOC has managed to transport 18 staff, 65 tonnes of bait and 30 tonnes of fuel across 800 kilometres of Southern Ocean. The safe delivery of two bait applications across the island has involved detailed planning and careful execution, using every window of good weather.
The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO is delighted to announce Vicki Soanes’ appointment to the position of Secretary General.
Vicki has been Acting Secretary General for the past nine months. She was originally recruited to the Secretariat six years ago as the Programme Officer for education and youth. During that time Vicki has led a number of flagship initiatives for the National Commission in New Zealand including ‘Looking Beyond Disaster’ (promoting youth-led disaster resilience), the Associated Schools Network, global citizenship education initiatives and setting up the youth reference group for the National Commission. Vicki led the New Zealand delegation to the 60th Anniversary of the UNESCO Associated Schools Network in Suwon, Korea in 2013, and was part of the delegation to the UNESCO General Conference in Paris the same year, and the recent National Commissions Inter-Regional meeting in Shanghai.
Dr Geoff Hicks replaced Dr Bob Frame as National Commissioner for Natural Science on 13 November. Geoff recently retired from the role of Chief Scientist at the Department of Conservation where he led and advised on the development of a long-term strategic agenda for research and managed the department’s science relationships and investment activities. Trained as a marine biologist, he had a productive research career spanning 25 years in both academic and cultural settings. He was Conceptual Leader and was responsible for creating the three popular natural environment exhibitions (Awesome Forces, Mountains to Sea and Bush City) at Te Papa, Museum of New Zealand.
Geoff has considerable experience working across UN agencies and for the last eight years has been New Zealand’s head of delegation to the Intergovernmental Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES). Serving on a number of governance and advisory committees, most recently as co-chair of the End-User Advisory Panel of the Biological Heritage National Science Challenge, he maintains strong science system networks and is an Emeritus Research Associate at Landcare Research. He holds a Diploma from the World Cultural Council (Consejo Cultural Mundial) and is a standing member of its Interdisciplinary Committee that elects the annual Albert Einstein World Award of Science.
What attracted you to the role?
I have represented New Zealand at a number of UN related conventions and agreements, working at the science-policy interface. The opportunity to join the National Commission and contribute further to the internationalisation of New Zealand’s natural sciences is very appealing. At my retirement earlier this year I was delighted to be appointed Emeritus Research Associate at Landcare Research, which will assist the creation of stronger links between domestic and global natural sciences.
Robyn Baker’s career has been in the field of education where she has contributed as a teacher, researcher, curriculum developer, teacher educator and leader. She was the Director and CEO of the New Zealand Council for Educational Research from 2000 to 2014. As a science educator Robyn has been involved in many national developments, including science curriculum and environmental education initiatives. She was a member of the Royal Society Council 1997-2002 and more recently chaired its Education Committee.
Robyn led the management of the Teaching and Learning Research Initiative (2003-2014). Currently, she chairs the selection and monitoring panels for the Teacher-led Innovation Fund. This fund is one aspect of the government’s Investing in Educational Success policy and provides funds for teachers to investigate new and innovative practices that have the potential to improve student learning.
Robyn has considerable experience of governance, as a senior manager working to a board and as a governor. Currently she is the Deputy Chair of the Board of the Australian Council for Education Research (ACER), a global research organisation with significant operations in a number of countries, including India, South America and Africa.
Robyn is an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to education (2015) and in 2002 was awarded the Royal Society of New Zealand Silver Science and Technology medal.
What attracted you to the Chair role?
The possibility of working with an expert collective – the Commissioners and the Secretariat – to make a small, but deliberate contribution to shaping the future we want for the upcoming generations attracted me to the role. The issues we face nationally and globally are complex and I think solutions require people with a diversity of expertise working together in systematic and sustained ways. It also requires a focus on areas that matter and thinking about the opportunities offered in the intersection between these key areas. I believe that the five areas of focus for the National Commission – education, communication and information, social and human sciences, natural sciences, and culture – all have a critical contribution to make as we shape the future we want and need.
In all, the National Commission focuses on areas that I think are important. It offers both diversity and expertise along with rich networks. I was keen to be part of this.
Recent Beeby Fellow Dr Caroline Yoon received the Teacher’s Choice for Best Resource in Secondary at the New Zealand Content Counts Education Awards on 24 November, along with a resource about the Treaty of Waitangi.
Dr Yoon, who is an associate professor at the University of Auckland where she heads the Mathematics Education Unit, created her resource LEMMA: Mathematics tasks that promote higher order thinking during her Beeby fellowship.
The resource encourages secondary school maths students to focus on problem solving and critical thinking. It differs from a standard maths textbook as it addresses higher level skills and higher level thinking that are much harder to assess and often missed. It also promotes communication and writing skills.
For more information on the resource visit the New Zealand Council for Educational Research website or watch this video featuring Dr Yoon.
The papers of Auckland’s founding father Sir John Logan Campbell (pictured right), the Katherine Mansfield Literary and Personal papers, the Waipu Scottish Migration Collection and Lancelot Eric Richdale’s Papers on research of New Zealand seabirds in the early 20th century are this year’s inscriptions onto the UNESCO Memory of the World New Zealand documentary heritage register, announced on 8 November.
UNESCO recognition draws attention to the significance of documentary heritage and the institutions that care for it.
The Memory of the World New Zealand Trust Chair Dianne Macaskill said, “the Memory of the World Trust is delighted to now have 20 inscriptions of significant documentary heritage items on the register. All greatly contribute to the story of our nation’s history and heritage and are significant to the identity of New Zealanders today.
“The Sir John Logan Campbell Papers are significant to the business and social history of the early days of Auckland, now New Zealand’s biggest city and economic powerhouse.
“The Katherine Mansfield papers are highly significant to the works of the author and the international recognition it receives today.
“The Waipu Scottish Migration Collection is the first successful inscription from outside a main centre. The collection documents a significant international migration by the Reverend Norman MacLeod and his followers in the 1800s from Scotland to Nova Scotia, via South Africa to Australia, and to New Zealand, reflecting the spread of the British Empire of the time.
“Lancelot Richdale papers document early research into New Zealand seabirds. They are of great scientific value and include rare early films of albatrosses at the now world-renowned Otago Albatross Sanctuary.
“These documentary heritage collections are excellent sources of research for historians, researchers, educators and many others in the wider community.”
The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO is delighted to announce the awarding of 13 grants worth $279,000 in total for the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO’s 2016/2017 Contestable Funding Round.
“The successful projects all contribute to the mandate of UNESCO in some way, demonstrating innovation which is likely to lead to positive long-term change,” says Ian McKinnon, Chair of the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO. “We are pleased to support activities that will make a significant difference in our New Zealand communities as well as the wider Pacific.”
Projects to receive funding include workshops run by Kakano Films Ltd supporting Māori and Pacific youth to make films that will be screened at the first Māoriland Rangatahi Film Festival next year; an app developed by the New Zealand Federation of Multicultural Councils Inc to support local ethnic migrant and refugee youth; and the development of a digital educational resource for the successful ‘Imagine my City’ pilot project, engaging young people with nature in their communities.
The mission of the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO is to further the vision and current goals of UNESCO in New Zealand and as part of the Pacific through education, the sciences, culture and the free exchange of ideas and intercultural dialogue.
The list of successful 2016/17 UCAF Grant recipients is here.
Photo courtesy of Nature Through the Arts Collective Trust
A project to widen access to more affordable education opportunities worldwide was announced at a landmark meeting in Scotland in October.
UNESCO and International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE) Chair in Open Education Resource (OER) Dr Wayne Mackintosh, Director of the OER Foundation based at Otago Polytechnic in New Zealand, facilitated the 5th International Meeting of OERu partners and the Open Education Resource universitas (OERu) Council of Chief Executive Officers’ Meeting in Inverness, hosted by the University of the Highlands and Islands.
At the meeting the Council announced plans to launch the OERu 1st Year of Study programme early in 2017. This will offer learners the opportunity to gain internationally recognised qualifications including the Certificate Higher Education Business (OERu) from the University of Highlands and Islands; and the Certificate of General Studies from Thompson Rivers University in Canada.
To celebrate International Peace Day, the United Nations Association of New Zealand and Wellington City Council held a panel discussion to talk about what can be done to bring communities together once the conflict ends in the Middle East. Professor Paul Morris, who holds a UNESCO Chair, was among the speakers. He provides an overview of the event.
After introductions from the Mayor; the Chair, Dr Rod Alley; and Joy Dunsheath, President of the United Nations Association of New Zealand (UNANZ), Dr Darren Brunk alerted the audience to the worsening plight of refugees from Syria and called upon the broad generosity of the New Zealand public to support refugee programmes and initiatives.
Professor Paul Morris introduced the work of the United Nations Association of Civilizations (UNAOC), stressing New Zealand’s pivotal role in its early development in this region. He focussed on its new scholarships at the Centre for Trust, Peace and Social Relations at Coventry University in England; the Inter-faith celebration of cultural identity through food security, which will take place early in 2017; the UNAOC summer schools; Plural + (Youth Video festival on migration, diversity and social inclusion, in New York next month); the Youth Solidarity Fund; the UNAOC Fellowships; and, the UNAOC Hate Speech conference and campaign.
Professor Morris called for young people to get involved and join the global community in participating in UNAOC activities. He ended by quoting Emmanuel Levinas and his reminder that “my fellow’s material needs are my spiritual needs”.
Peace was at the top of the agenda at the inaugural Asia Pacific Youth Dialogue in Chendu, China, officially launched on 21 September, International Peace Day, attended by two Youth Reference Group members.
The three day forum brought together youth delegates from 46 countries, including young New Zealanders Danielle Newton (Youth Reference Group Chair) and Teina Wells-Smith, who represented the National Commission.
The Dialogue was structured around two core themes; the nexus between Asia Pacific civilizations, cultures, and social cohesion, respect for diversity and peace building, and the role of youth as agents of change and custodians of the future regionally and internationally.
“The strongest connections we made were with our brothers and sisters from the Pacific,” says Danielle. “We all understood the nature of the problems in our region and were able to form recommendations which spoke to how we, as youth, could really make a positive impact around issues such as climate change, preservation of culture and gender equality.”
The duo plan to keep in touch with their new Pacific networks. “We all worked so well together through exciting discussions that these connections must be kept strong andcontinued if we are to progress with the goals and aspirations we've put out there,” says Teina.
Both Danielle and Teina enjoyed the culinary challenge of Chengdu hotpot and the friendliness of the Chinese people. “My first impression of China was that it was actually greener than I thought it would be! I grew to love the city more and more each day,” says Danielle.
Kiwi comic artist and illustrator Toby Morris demonstrated how cartoons can be used to promote social messages at the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO’s launch of a significant global report on Wednesday 20 September.
The New Zealand launch of UNESCO’s inaugural Global Education Monitoring (GEM) Report Education for people and planet: Creating sustainable futures for all featured four guest speakers: prominent educationalist Dame Karen Sewell, Toby Morris, the National Commission’s new Education Commissioner Cheryl Stephens and Youth Reference Group member Raven Maeder, with Chair Ian McKinnon as Master of Ceremonies.
The GEM Report is the first in a 15-year series that monitors global progress towards achieving Sustainable Development Goal 4 – Education, which UNESCO is leading.
“The aim of SDG4 is to ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all,” says Ian McKinnon, Chair of the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO.
“We need to see education as more than transferral of knowledge – it’s about empowering citizens of all ages to think critically and find innovative solutions to today’s global issues.”
Toby Morris, creator of the monthly comic series Pencilsword and half of the Toby and Toby duo responsible for the series 'That is the question' on Radio NZ, was commissioned by UNESCO to illustrate the youth version of the GEM Report. He collaborated closely via Skype and email with a representative at UNESCO’s headquarters in Paris to capture the essence of the more than 400-page report in just seven pages.
The new Chair of our Youth Reference Group is Danielle Newton. Danielle is a University of Auckland scholarship recipient and mentor, currently undertaking her third year of study in a Bachelor of Arts/Bachelor of Science Conjoint, double majoring in Politics and Sociology and Environmental Science and Geography.
Alongside her studies, Danielle is involved in a range of social justice organisations and youth networks. She was the winner of the District 16 (National) and International Recipient of the Zonta Young Women in Public Affairs Award in 2014, and facilitated the Social Development Focus Group in 2015 and Environment Focus Groups at the 2016 Aotearoa Youth Declaration Conference.
Danielle shared some thoughts with us about her new role.
What attracted you to the role?
My own passions and beliefs are in full alignment with the core values of UNESCO, with a particular interest in human and indigenous rights, gender equality, disaster risk reduction and education for sustainable development. I firmly believe that international scientific cooperation, integrated with indigenous, cultural frameworks, is key not only to engendering greater scientific and inter-cultural dialogue, but also to the development of global citizenship and building of more equitable and sustainable interactions between humans and the environment. I am wholly committed to building a long-term relationship with the NZ National Commission for UNESCO, actively creating pathways towards the peaceful and sustainable future we want for all people in our region.
What do you hope to bring to the role?
I hope that I can bring some dynamic enthusiasm and critical insight into the discussions of the National Commission, with the aim to be a driving force for change whilst always keeping in mind the core concerns of young people, both in New Zealand and globally.
What youth issues do you see as most important to address in New Zealand and in the world?
In my mind, the devastating environmental reality of today is so profoundly linked to the realities of growing social and gender inequality and the erosion of an empowering democracy, that I am committed to a mobilisation of our spiritual and political resources for transformative change on all of these fronts. Engaging young people for a sustainable future is therefore fundamental to promoting peace, intergenerational equity and the protection of nature.
We are delighted to welcome our new Social Sciences Commissioner – Materoa Dodd. Materoa has been a Senior Lecturer specialising in international social trends and governance. She pioneered action research partnerships between iwi, universities and the Harvard Project on Indian Economic development. She has been appointed to Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi and has served on tribal, educational, community development and Māori women’s organisations for the past 30 years.
Materoa shared some thoughts with us about her role, as well as the most pressing issues in the social sciences.
What attracted you to the Commissioner role?
Curiosity about UNESCO and the role of Commissioners in developing a social science action research agenda.
What do you hope to bring to the role?
Practical wisdom, communication skills, organisation, a sense of purpose and humour!
What are the key issues in the social sciences that you would most like to see addressed in New Zealand and around the world?
Tamariki ora – flourishing children, literacy, clean water, fresh air, effective governance, food security, and diversity and freedom of movement.
It is our great pleasure to welcome Dr Cheryl Stephens as our new National Commissioner for Education. Cheryl is of Te Arawa and Taranaki descent. She has more than 35 years’ experience in the education sector in primary school, teacher education and tertiary teaching. During this time she has assumed a large number of executive management, leadership and governance roles, including as Director – National Institute of Māori Education, Te Whare Wānanga o Awanuiārangi; Board member of the New Zealand Council for Educational Research; and Council member of the New Zealand Association for Research in Education. Cheryl brings a strong background in Māori education and research.
Cheryl shared some thoughts with us about education and her new role.
What attracted you to the Commissioner role?
I have an extensive background in governance, management and leadership of organisations and see the commissioner role as an opportunity to contribute to both national and international UNESCO priorities.
What do you hope to bring to the role?
This is an opportunity for me to make a contribution to UNESCO through my extensive education networks and in particular Māori education and research.
What issues in education would you most like to see highlighted in New Zealand and around the world?
Human rights of access to education, environmental issues. For example, access to clean water; and rights of indigenous people and communities to use their language, culture and knowledge.
Education Minister Hekia Parata today announced five appointments to the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO.
“I am delighted to appoint these five Commissioners. They are all respected experts in their fields and well positioned to advise and represent New Zealand on UNESCO matters”, says Ms Parata.
“I would also like to thank the outgoing Commissioners and Chair for their service and convey my appreciation for the time and energy they have given. They have each made a valuable contribution to the National Commission.”
The new commissioners are:
Robyn Baker, Chair (November 2016– November 2019)
Ms Baker is an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit for services to education. She has international experience as Deputy Chair of the Australian Council for Education Research and at the Royal Society.
Materoa Dodd, Social Sciences Commissioner (June 2016 – June 2018)
Materoa Dodd has been a Senior Lecturer at the School of Māori and Pacific Development, Waikato University. She has served as a trustee, governor and Chair for a diverse range of organisations.
Dr Cheryl Stephens, Education Commissioner (June 2016 – June 2018)
Cheryl Stephens currently sits on the New Zealand Council for Educational Research and has been a member of the New Zealand Association for Research in Education (NZARE) Council for fourteen years.
Geoff Hicks, Natural Sciences Commissioner (November 2016 – November 2019)
Geoff Hicks has recently retired from the role of Chief Scientist at the Department of Conservation. He is a member of the Interdisciplinary Committee of the World Cultural Council.
Trish Carter, Communication Commissioner (November 2016 –November 19)
Trish Carter has been reappointed to the Commission. She has significant experience in international news media.
Arapata Hakiwai is continuing in his role as Culture Commissioner.
Participants at the Global Citizenship Education Conference in Wellington, May 2016.
In 2015, the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO granted $50,000 to the New Zealand Centre for Global Studies (NZCGS) as a contribution to a project titled ‘Global Citizenship Education in New Zealand’.
The grant has allowed the centre to both further develop its student conference programme and to explore global citizenship education in other parts of the world.
Youth Reference Group Members (L-R): Raven Maeder, Teina Wells-Smith, Samantha Allen, Danielle Newton, Kya Raina Lal, Sophie Goulter and Shawn Thomas.
Five new young people have recently been appointed as members of the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO's Youth Reference Group. Raven Maeder, Teina Wells-Smith, Danielle Newton, Kya Raina Lal and Shawn Thomas join existing members Samantha Allen and Sophie Goulter.
The New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO was principal sponsor of the fourth World Journalism Education Congress in July.
Organised by Auckland University of Technology (AUT), the 2016 World Journalism Education Congress addressed the most pressing issues confronting journalism and journalism educators around the world today.
More than 200 participants from 48 countries attended the event, to discuss topics such as concerns for reputation and media freedoms, and journalism in today’s digital environment.
Among the attendees were Ian McKinnon, Chair of the New Zealand National Commission, who provided a welcome address and chaired a session and Trish Carter, National Commissioner for Communication, who also led one of the sessions.
From left: Ian McKinnon, Dr Fassy Yusuf, Dr Shailendra Singh, Professor Ahmed Hidass, Associate Professor Verica Rupar, Professor Abiodun Salawu, Assistant Professor Jeremaiah M Opiniano, Trish Carter, Dr Cait McMahon. Photo: Mandy Te
The National Commission provided funding for Dr Cait McMahon to participate in a panel, 'Reporting Trauma and Suicide'. In addition, the Commission provided travel grants to enable nine journalists from developing countries to attend the congress. The following recipients received up to NZD2000 each to help cover the cost of travel to Auckland:
- Haiyan Wang, School of Communication and Design, Sun Yat-Sen University, China
- Dr Fassy Yusuf, University of Lagos, Nigeria
- Assistant Professor Jeremaiah M Opiniano, University of Santo Tomas, The Philippines
- Professor Ahmed Hidass, Instit Superieur d'Information et Communication, Morocco
- Eno Akpabio, University of Namibia, Namibia
- Abiodun Salawu, North West University, South Africa
- Dr Shailendra Singh, Fiji
- Victoria Lepou, Samoa
- Moh Zaenal Abidin Eko Putro, Indonesia.
Freedom of information is a key theme for UNESCO.
Cantabrian Tim Francis has been selected from over 900 applicants from across the globe to be part of the UNESCO Young Professionals Programme (YPP). The programme offers young people an opportunity to join UNESCO at the early stage of their professional career.
Tim was nominated by the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO and, following his successful appointment, has joined the Communication and Information Sector at UNESCO’s Headquarters in Paris.
New Zealand has officially become the third country to accede to the UNESCO Asia-Pacific Regional Convention 2011 on the Recognition of Qualifications in Higher Education, joining China and Australia as the leading countries in the process of accession.
(New Zealand's Permanent Delegate Susannah Gordon handed over the instrument of accession to the Asia-Pacific Regional Convention on the Recognition of Qualifications in Higher Education to Qian TANG, UNESCO Assistant Director-General for Education.)
This Convention provides a multilateral legal framework to improve international recognition of higher education qualifications and periods of study within the Asia-Pacific region.
The convention could help to facilitate greater mobility of students, academic staff and workers from the Asia-Pacific region. It could also improve the understanding and recognition of New Zealanders’ qualifications internationally as well as making it easier for skilled migrants from the region to work and study here. It could have significant benefits for New Zealand particularly in the areas of export education, trade and foreign policy relationships.
Engaging with this Convention will align New Zealand with its competitors in the export education market and enhance linkages within the Asia-Pacific region. It also supports New Zealand’s efforts to increase international connections through the tertiary education system and facilitates more New Zealanders to study overseas.
Two more countries need to accede before the Convention can come into force.
The Chair of the New Zealand National Commission for UNESCO, Ian McKinnon, read the UNESCO Director General's message on the occasion of UN Holocaust Remembrance Day at an event at Parliament on 27 January 2016.
The event was organised by the New Zealand Holocaust Centre and hosted by Hon. Chris Finalyson QC.
The Director General's message reminded us that 'commemorating the victims is a common duty of humankind. It is a call to "remember together" and to share this universal memory, regardless of origin or religion. It is also the desire to understand the historical and social processes that unleashed such an outbreak of violence, in order to prevent them from recurring today'.
The full message can be downloaded from UNESCO's website http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0024/002433/243350E.pdf
The UNESCO director-general's message to the world for United Nations International Holocaust Remembrance Day is powerful and timely, said New Zealand Holocaust Centre director Mrs Inge Woolf today.
Headed "Antisemitic propaganda and the Holocaust: from words to genocide," Mrs Bokova's words challenge us all to commemorate the Holocaust victims regardless of our origin or religion; to answer hate speech and propaganda with intelligence and reason; to stand against racism and antisemitism; and to use the media and education programmes to spread knowledge and understanding of the Holocaust.
"Mrs Bokova's powerful message is a spur to all Kiwis to see through propaganda and the falsification of history, because we know they lead to hatred and violence," Mrs Woolf added.
"As Mrs Bokova stated, the Nazi genocide of European Jews confronts us with the most extreme perversion – the negation of humanity in the human being. That must not be allowed to happen again.
"The New Zealand Holocaust Centre is dedicated to educating New Zealand society, through Holocaust history and remembrance, that we need to oppose prejudice in all its forms, and guard against attempts to make any group a target, as happened to the Jews in Nazi Germany.
"Although studying genocide confronts us with the worst of humanity, as Mrs Bokova says, it also inspires and empowers individuals to stand against prejudice and apathy.
"The death of 1.5 million Jewish children has inspired Wellington children to collect 1.5 million buttons which we plan will be the genesis of a national Holocaust Children's Memorial – for the children, by children.
"We want New Zealand children to respect the diversity in our society, and see the dangers inherent in bullying; and also the dangers of being bystanders to the bad actions of others.
"We invite all Wellington children to join us on UN Holocaust Remembrance Day, Wednesday 27 January at 2pm at the Holocaust Memorial, Makara Cemetery, to lay buttons to remember the children who died so tragically," Mrs Woolf concluded.
Education Minister Hekia Parata spoke during an event at Parliament on Tuesday 8 September 2015, to mark UNESCO’s seventh decade supporting education, science and culture.
(L-R Ms Trish Carter, Professor Arohia Durie, Mr Etienne Clement, Mr Ian McKinnon, Hon Hekia Parata, Dr Arapata Hakiwai, Dr Bob Frame, Ms Sophie Goulter)
She said that New Zealand lived up to its reputation for forward-thinking when it became the second nation to sign UNESCO’s constitution in the wake of World War II. UNESCO’s mandate, to build peace through dialogue, is still making a difference in people’s lives, in New Zealand and around the world.
The National Commission, as the face of UNESCO in New Zealand, supports a range of projects that have a positive impact by fostering quality education, cultural heritage and youth development. They cover a variety of subjects, including multiculturalism, the training of Adult Education champions and global citizenship education through the Model UN General Assembly.
UNESCO and the New Zealand National Commission will continue to build on the work of the past seven decades in order to make a difference in the lives of upcoming generations.