Interns debate at the UN: Empowering youth through Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

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GENEVA — On April 18th, the FII-Geneva joined the organization Interns with a mission to discuss youth empowerment through the Sustainable Development Goals at the Palais des Nations, in Geneva. The issue of unpaid internships was raised by the FII-Geneva in the form of a question directed at Ms. Arancha González, Executive Director of the International Trade Center (ITC). Over 200 interns present welcomed the question with a round of applause. Ms. González showed sympathy to the cause by saying she herself has been an intern. ITC’s Executive Director said she plans to bring the issue to member states and, in the meantime, hopes to increase opportunities to young professionals by increasing the number of vacancies through the Junior Professional Officers (JPO) Programme.

Interns with a Mission proposed a motion: The current SDG framework provides enough opportunities for youth involvement and empowerment. Four panelists were invited to debate this motion: Ms. Arancha González, Executive Director of the International Trade Center (ITC); Ms. Lyne Calder, from the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs;  Mr. Paul Ladd, Director of the United Nations Research Institute for Social Development (UNRISD); and Ms. Malika Dreyfuss, Training Programme Coordinator at Euforia. Most of the interns present voted against the motion: 192 voted “NO” and only 62 voted “YES”.

Read our complete coverage of the event on social media here.

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