On October 24th, 2019, the Utah International Mountain Forum (UIMF), a coalition of clubs at Utah Valley University (UVU), participated in the university’s celebration of United Nations (UN) Day. UN Day celebrates the formation of the United Nations, which occurred on October 24th, 1945 in San Francisco, USA.
As a part of the UVUN initiative on campus, UIMF participates in UN-focused events like this at the invitation of the Office for Global Engagement. This year was the second time, when UIMF celebrated UN Day under the UVUN umbrella. Members of the coalition of clubs hosted table alongside the National Security Studies Department, Peace and Justice Studies Department, the UVU Reflection Center, and the UVU Office for Global Engagement. UIMF was the only student club to be represented at UN Day.
(L to R): Veronica Caballero, UVU Office of Global Engagement, Samuel Elzinga, President, UIMF and Amy Barnett, UVU Office of Global Engagement during the UN Day at UVU.
At the tabling event, which occurred in the UVU Liberal Arts building hallway, UIMF members highlighted their advocacy efforts at the 2018 High-Level Political Forum and the 63rd Commission on the Status of Women. They also shared experiences of contribution to the 68th United Nations Civil Society Conference co-hosted by UVU in Salt Lake City during Augist 26-28, 2019.
Passers-by who were interested in the mission of UIMF were able to learn more about the coalition of clubs and its initiatives, all while learning more about student efforts to raise awareness in the State of Utah and globally about great disparities faced by mountain communities, who are among the poorest and most neglected in the world.
Overall, the UN Day Celebration with other members of the UVUN was a success. UIMF was able to advocate more for support to mountain women and communities to be in the focus of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development by spreading awareness about the challenges faced by these communities, all while being able to recruit more members and interface with other members of the UVUN initiative to coordinate joint events together. In addition, hosting tables is one of the ways for UIMF members to raise funds which they need for their advocacy campaigns.
Samuel Elzinga, President, Utah International Mountain Forum