31 August 2015: In late August, Generations For Peace (GFP) was honoured to attend and present at the first-ever Global Forum on Youth, Peace and Security, held not far from our Amman, Jordan headquarters. The forum was hosted by the Hashemite Kingdom of Jordan, and co-organised by the UN Secretary-General’s Envoy on Youth, the UN Peacebuilding Support Office, UNFPA, and UNDP, in partnership with the United Network of Young Peacebuilders (UNOY) and Search for Common Ground. The event was under the patronage of HRH Crown Prince Al Hussein bin Abdullah II, who in April 2015 became the youngest person to ever address the UN Security Council.
Out of many young peace-builders from around the world who applied to attend the Forum, GFP Volunteer, Nor Elmuna from Libya, was selected. Several GFP headquarters staff and GFP Founder and Chairman HRH Prince Feisal Al Hussein also attended both days of the event.
GFP staff met other conference participants both in various sessions as well as the many who stopped by our booth to learn more about our work.
Lama Hattab, GFP Programmes Director, had the opportunity to present at a roundtable session on global commitments to the Amman Youth Declaration, which expressed commitment to live in a peaceful global society and calls on governments and other stakeholders to consider specific action points around youth participation and leadership in issues of peace and society, youth preventing violence and building peace, gender equality among young people, and young people’s socio-economic empowerment.
Julia Kent, Director of Donor & Partner Communications, Hana Juma, Senior Programmes Officer, and Mo’ath Alkhawaldeh, Programmes Officer, shared some of their highlights from the weekend:
Who was the most interesting person you met?
Hana: “Victor Ochen from Uganda, as he is a young African man who achieved a lot as a peace ambassador, and is still passionate to learn from different organisations and individuals about peace-building best practices! It was also an honour to see Jordan’s Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh attending the conference.”
Mo’ath: “Ahmad Alhendawi, the United Nations Secretary-General’s Special Envoy on Youth. He is a very unique personality, because he grew up in Amman without many opportunities around him, and also he worked really hard to reach where he is now, which is an inspiration. When he stopped at the GFP booth, we talked about the commitment of youth post-Arab Spring, and we agreed that it’s the youth’s responsibility to take on the challenges we are facing. To me, he was interesting because he has a local Jordanian perspective on the global problems around us.”
What was your favourite moment?
Hana: When the forum participants went to their first coffee break, and all of them started approaching our booth at once! We didn’t have to do any extra effort to encourage people to visit us, as the booth design was smart and catchy enough to make them excited to know more about GFP! Many asked questions about the countries we work in, the vehicles that we use and how we choose them as part of planning for the activities. In addition, it was great to see their positive reaction when they realised that the GFP-HQ is based in Jordan.
Mo’ath: Seeing and hearing the participants’ reactions to hearing about GFP’s work in Jordan and abroad, also realising how much our work could have a positive impact in their communities.
Julia: When the Amman Youth Declaration was officially adopted and the conference came to a close, all the young attendees in the audience, from all over the world, together held up their phones as lights in the auditorium, chanting “Youth For Peace!”