‘UN Friday’ - Sharing the Ideas of Peace
The United Nations Information Office in Uzbekistan has held a ‘UN Friday’ event at the Westminster International University in Tashkent.
The ‘UN Fridays’ project was first established in 2011 by the UN Information Office, in order to acquaint Uzbekistan’s public with the UN’s national and international activities. Since then the ‘UN Friday’ events have appealed to the interest of students, volunteers, activists, youth organisations, media representatives and UN partner organisations.
This week’s UN Friday served as an interactive way of introducing students to both the UN’s work in general, and specifically the work of the United Nations Information Office in Uzbekistan. The event began with an Information Office representative asking questions to the participating students, and their responses indicated that while they had a good idea what the organisation did, they also had some knowledge gaps that could be addressed.
After a brief overview of the topics to be addressed during the event, and after a statement by the university’s English teacher Ms. Oydin Sobirova, the United Nations Information Office staff presented a video which addressed the MDGs. The staff then helped to raise the awareness of the university students regarding the UN’s international purpose through a number of poignant statements. It was for instance highlighted that more is spent on military armaments around the world then on peacekeeping programmes, while it was also mentioned that an average German family spends 100 times more income on food than a family in Bhutan. While these statements created a predicted response, that the UN should encourage the movement of funds from developed countries to those more in need, the information office’s staff corrected that the UN’s purpose is not redistribute wealth but rather to help underdeveloped countries achieve greater levels of development.