The United Nations in Pretoria recently concluded a successful programme of educational outreach to nearly 900 students in ten schools around the country. The UN4U is a week-long programme commemorated by UN Information Centres globally, prior to UN Day on 24th October. Staff members including senior officials speak at local schools to share their different information about their programmes as well as about the UN work in peace keeping, tackling climate change, women empowerment, poverty reduction and other aspects.
This year, UN4U visited ten schools in Gauteng, North West and Mpumalanga Provinces between October 12 and 16.
Eight UN staff, including senior programme officers, project managers and heads of agencies gave presentations to students about what the UN does and what the new Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) actually mean to South Africa’s growth and development.
Discussions were engaging and interactive with a lot of questions from the enthusiastic students many who were keen on learning more about the role of the global body.
UN4U which began in 2009 has been an effective awareness campaign tool in reaching out to school children. During the UN talks, students are shown videos, photographs and other presentations about global issues in which the UN is involved. They are given the opportunity to ask questions and to role play as UN staff.