Model United Nations Event
Model UN event on sustainable cities
On Thursday 22 June 2023, 24 pupils in (new) Year 10 were given the opportunity to have their voices heard via a Model United Nations conference on Sustainable Cities. They took on the role of researchers for C40 cities - large urban areas across the world, which are committed to tackling the causes of climate change and mitigating the social, economic and environmental consequences of the changes - in order to address the question: What action can C40 cities take to tackle climate change and make communities sustainable?
Throughout the day pupils had the opportunity to work with Geography teacher, Miss Crouch, Science teacher, Dr Simpson, and five trainee Geography Teachers from the Gloucestershire Initial Teacher Education Partnership (GITEP).
Following a brief introduction to the day, the pupils worked in teams to research the contributions of six C40 cities and the impact of climate change on these areas. Each delegation of 4 represented a different city: Cape Town, Dhaka, Lagos, New York City, São Paulo and Sydney. Having researched the specific challenges that their city faces, the pupils began to create resolutions, identifying the action which needs to be taken in order to achieve the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals. The pupils focused upon SDG 11 (Sustainable Cities and Communities: make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable) and SDG 13 (Climate Action: take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts).
After putting together resolutions and having had an excellent session of lobbying, our pupils walked down to the Cotswold District Council Chambers, where they were greeted by Councillor Nikki Ind, who explained how the Chambers are used, and how our conference had parallels with their own work at the Council.
Over the course of 90 minutes, each group presented their policy statement and resolutions. There was a fantastic atmosphere and some tough questions asked and alliances tested, but the level of the debate reflected some fantastic ideas and the hard work of the pupils and teachers in the morning.
Miss Crouch, Geography teacher, commented how impressed she was with how the pupils tackled the challenges of research and debate in such a short amount of time. The group were so enthusiastic and engaged throughout the day, and they should be very proud of their efforts. A special ‘thank you’ needs to go to Dr Simpson and the brilliant GITEP trainee teachers for supporting the pupils with the event. Additionally, we are very grateful that we were able to use the Council Chambers during the afternoon.
“I really enjoyed the research and presentation because it was a new experience and I was able to develop my debating skills.” Cristian
“It was really fun to negotiate with other groups, and it was great to see other peoples’ ideas on how to improve the sustainability of cities.” Ines
“My favourite part of the day was visiting the Council Chambers and asking and responding to questions from other groups. This was a good experience as I had to think on my feet and work with my team.” Aidan
“I was extremely impressed with pupil engagement throughout the day. It was brilliant to see pupils using their prior knowledge about climate change and sustainability to inform their responses. They were excellent at negotiating and they asked some really challenging questions during the debate. Great work!” Miss Eade, GITEP Geography trainee