Leadership Conference


Keeping the Promise: Empowering Youth for Peace and Sustainable Development

The Premise:
"Democracy in the twenty-first century faces no task more pressing than to generate a nobler, more sustainable vision of the aim of life and society"

       -   Erazim Kohac 
           The Faces of Democracy    
           “Looking to the 21st Century”                     

21st Century education needs to incorporate more learning across cultures and establish meaningful ways for students and their educators to broaden their perspectives on how to make the world a better place.  This year’s UN Student Leadership Conference on Development (UNSLCD) will move forward with this premise and is ready to connect peace education with sustainable development with human perspectives for human sustainability.

Human sustainability represents an approach to development which addresses the fundamental concerns of poverty, the environment, equality, and democracy. With the end of the Cold War, the amazing advances with communication technology, and the advanced networking of humanity, the world is connected as never before to bring young people together across cultures to work on the various challenges through broadening their perspectives on the issues needed to strengthen human development.  These events have trended to make it realistically possible for today’s youth to be part of the solution to ending conflict through sustained human development.  Turning awareness into action has never been more important.

The Vision:
"Poverty eradication is the greatest global challenge facing the world today and an indispensable
requirement for sustainable development."

       - Sustainable Development Solutions Network  
         Report for the Secretary-General June 6, 2013

How do we know how to get there?  After seeing many examples of success from the original Millennium Development Goals (MDGs), civil society has evolved as major partners/players in the post 2015 development agenda at the United Nations.  Ban Ki-moon, Secretary-General of the United Nations, initiated the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network in 2012 to mobilize global scientific and technological knowledge on the challenges of sustainable development, including the design and implementation of the post-2015 global development agenda.

Having seen the vision for 2015, and how this vision has mobilized society to reach its over-all goal of cutting extreme poverty in half by 2015, we sit in a unique position and can envision the preferred state of 2030 with the elimination of extreme poverty in our world.  It takes all of us to reach that goal and, as the future belongs to the younger generation, they need to be part of the solution when we transition from the Millennium Development Goals to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

The vision of this year’s UNSLCD is for youth to be inclusive in the ending of the MDG era and empowered to be part of the solution process to achieve the SDGs by 2030.

About Sustainable Development Goals
The path forward in the post-2015 has been outlined in a report prepared for the UN Secretary-General entitled: An Action Agenda for Sustainable Development.  It was prepared by the Executive Committee of the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) and was submitted to him on June 6, 2013.  The report concluded that a sustainable development path should be built on a global framework of cooperation to address the four dimensions of sustainable development based on four related concepts:
  1. The right to development for every country
  2. Human rights and social inclusion
  3. Convergence of living standards across countries  
  4. Shared responsibilities & opportunities

    About Sustainable Development Goals
The Leadership Council of the Sustainable Development Solutions Network has identified the following  priority challenges, which are interconnected and each contribute to the four dimensions of sustainable development:
  1. End Extreme Poverty Including Hunger
  2. Achieve Development within Planetary Boundaries
  3. Ensure Effective Learning for All Children and Youth for Life and Livelihood
  4. Achieve Gender Equality, Social Inclusion, and Human Rights for All
  5. Achieve Health and Wellbeing at All Ages
  6. Improve Agriculture Systems and Raise Rural Prosperity
  7. Empower Inclusive, Productive and Resilient Cities
  8. Curb Human-Induced Climate Change and Ensure Sustainable Energy
  9. Secure Ecosystem Services and Biodiversity, and Ensure Good Management of Water and Other Natural Resources
  10. Transform Governance for Sustainable Development:

UNSLCD Sub Themes for Student Selection

a.    Being Global Citizens in a Multi-Cultural World
b.    Sustaining Development Through Environmental Responsibility
c.    Achieving Education for All
d.    Food Security in an Interdependent World
e.    Human Rights and Sustainable Development

Each sub theme has a four page background paper and is developed to help students with their task and includes Highly Recommended and Recommended resources to help streamline their preparation. 


Background Resources
A -Global_Citizenry.pdf
54.9 KB

B - Environmental_Responsibility.pdf
25.1 KB

C - Education.pdf
42.5 KB

D - Sustainable_Food_Security.pdf
35.2 KB

E - Human_Rights.pdf
21.5 KB

Voices of Youth Connect Webpage

Media Toolkit
2.9 MB

To register for Voices of Youth Connect use the following format:
First Name_GEMConnect_City_Country

For example:

Participating schools decide their sub theme choices and make their international student leader selections in collaboration with Global Education Motivators.

International Student Leaders (15) – Cost: $100
Regional Leaders at VC sites: TBD by Site
Non-Leadership Students at UNHQ/NYC $25.00


9601 Germantown Ave.
Philadelphia, PA 19118
Tel: 215-248-1150
Fax: 215-248-7056

Upcoming Events
Coming Soon:
Student Conference on the Paris Agreement

International Day for Peace 2018
September 21, 2018
Student Leadership Conference on Development 2019
February 2019

Select Global and Educational Events:

Human Rights Day
December 10, 2018
United Nations Climate Summit 2019
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