New York

October 2020

UN releases system-wide Community Engagement Guidelines

As the Secretary-General boldly states in his 2020 report on Peacebuilding and Sustaining Peace, “civil society engagement and participation is indispensable to peacebuilding.” Civil society organizations (CSOs), practitioners and individual leaders are often the primary peacebuilding agents, working directly to negotiate and mediate conflict, supporting community reconciliation and rebuilding, and carrying out a range of programs and efforts to strengthen the very social fabric of society.

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October 2020

In & Around the UN

The six months since our last newsletter have been extraordinary ones as COVID-19 hit New York in force in March. As the pandemic unfolded, QUNO staff members quickly adjusted to working from home, with staff reaching out to friends and colleagues throughout the UN system and to peacebuilding practitioners around the world, listening, supporting, and seeking to understand how these new conditions were impacting global efforts for peace.

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September 2020

The time is now: Recommit to Peace

Established in 1981 by the unanimous agreement of the United Nations General Assembly, the International Day of Peace (21 September) is devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace and a commitment towards non-violence. For the past five years, QUNO has facilitated the development and distribution of a sign on statement amongst peacebuilding organizations globally to mark the day and engage with Member States and UN stakeholders ahead of the UN General Assembly session.  

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August 2020

Connecting Civil Society Organizations and UN Peace and Development Advisors

Roslyn Akombe from DPPA moderates the session with QUNO’s UN Representative, Rachel Madenyika

As co-facilitator of the Civil Society – UN Prevention Platform, QUNO co-hosted a meeting entitled ‘Responding to Socio-economic and Humanitarian Impacts of COVID-19 Through Civil Society - Peace and Development Advisor Partnerships.’ This discussion was jointly hosted with the UN Development Programme (UNDP)-Department of Political Affairs (DPPA) Joint Programme on Building National Capacities for Conflict Prevention, which currently deploys over 56 Peace and Development Advisors (PDAs) around the world. 

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July 2020

Quaker Conversations: Changing the World from the Top Down

QUNO was invited to lead the second session in the Friends World Committee for Consultation’s (FWCC) Quaker Conversations, FWCC’s monthly webinar series with Friends around the world. QUNO New York Director, Andrew Tomlinson, spoke about the topic “Changing the World from the Top Down," and began by recalling the Quaker presence at the United Nations (UN), which dates back to the signing of the UN Charter in San Francisco in June, 1945 – almost exactly 75 years ago. When the UN began its work in New York and Geneva, the Quaker offices at the United Nations started right alongside them.

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July 2020

Designing Effective Context-specific Upstream Prevention Programs

QUNO recently co-hosted an event titled, ‘Designing Effective Upstream Prevention Programs: Ensuring Prevention is Context-specific and Anchored in Evidence,’ the fifth discussion in the Civil Society – UN Prevention Platform’s 2020 discussion series. This meeting brought together researchers, civil society practitioners, Member States, and United Nations (UN) colleagues representing a wide range of expertise for an engaging conversation on challenges and opportunities for advancing holistic, upstream approaches to preventing violent conflict.  

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July 2020

Advancing Prevention in the Era of Climate Change

As the sixth and final event in the Civil Society – UN Prevention Platform’s 2020 discussion series, QUNO co-hosted a meeting at the end of July, ‘Advancing Prevention in the Era of Climate Change: Leveraging Climate and Conflict Sensitive Approaches.’ The timely and pressing theme of climate security elicited active engagement from the United Nations, civil society, and Member States, including an intervention from QUNO Geneva’s Representative, Lindsey Fielder Cook, on human rights-based approaches to climate security.

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June 2020

Strengthening Prevention Tools: Inclusive Approaches to Supporting Mediation

As the fourth meeting in the Civil Society – UN Prevention Platform’s 2020 discussion series on prevention, QUNO co-hosted a discussion, Strengthening Prevention Tools: Inclusive Approaches to Supporting Mediation. The Platform welcomed over 50 global participants from the United Nations (UN), African Union (AU), civil society, and Member States to this lively and informative conversation. 

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June 2020

QUNO submits recommendations on reconciliation for UN Peacebuilding Architecture Review

2020 marks a milestone year for the United Nations (UN) as it approaches the fifteenth anniversary of the creation of the Peacebuilding Architecture. Comprised of the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC), Peacebuilding Fund (PBF) and the Peacebuilding Support Office (PBSO), this combined architecture is dedicated to supporting countries emerging from violent conflict as they seek to identify and implement priorities to build and sustain peace. 

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June 2020

QUNO and GPPAC submit recommendations for the UN Peacebuilding Architecture Review

2020 marks fifteen years since the creation of the Peacebuilding Architecture at the United Nations (UN), which includes the Peacebuilding Commission (PBC), Peacebuilding Fund (PBF) and the Peacebuilding Support Office (PBSO). This UN architecture was created after recognizing that there were no dedicated bodies or funding to support and accompany countries emerging from and rebuilding after conflict.  

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May 2020

Transformative Gender Approaches to Conflict Prevention During COVID-19

On 20 May, QUNO co-hosted “Prevention and Implications of COVID-19: Learning from Transformative Gender Approaches,” an online discussion that brought together over 40 UN, civil society, and Member State experts as part of the Civil Society-UN Prevention Platform’s 2020 discussion series on prevention.  

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May 2020

QUNO Directors’ Letter on the Impact of COVID-19

Dear Friends,

The spread of COVID-19 has changed our world. We hold in the light those made ill by the new virus, their families and friends, and the dedicated people caring for all of us. Our hearts go out to the millions of people who are suffering as societies struggle to respond, including those who have lost their livelihoods and the most vulnerable among us.

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May 2020

QUNO Co-hosts Session on Inclusion at the 2020 Stockholm Forum on Peace and Development

On 22 May, QUNO was very pleased to partner with the Norwegian Institute of International Affairs in co-hosting a virtual session on “Inclusion: What Have We Learned?” during the 2020 Stockholm Forum on Peace and Development. The annually held Forum brings together members of the peacebuilding, security, development, and humanitarian communities for interdisciplinary exchanges and dialogue. Aptly, this year’s theme of Sustaining Peace in the Time of COVID-19 fostered lively and productive discussion

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April 2020

Towards a people-centered and sustainable approach to COVID-19

The UN was born out of the global crisis of the second world war. Now, 75 years later, another crisis faces us. How can we both reaffirm the Charter commitment to collective action and bring to this crisis the lessons we have learned about offering integrated support in partnership with the communities we accompany, leaving no one behind?

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April 2020

QUNO Virtually Co-hosts Discussion on the Role of Young People in Preventing Conflict

On 30 April, QUNO was pleased to co-host “Dialogue and Mutual Understanding: the Role of Young People in Preventing Conflict,” a virtual discussion that brought together over 35 United Nations (UN), civil society, and Member State experts as part of the Civil Society-UN Prevention Platform’s 2020 discussion series on prevention. The Platform’s discussions aim to support and contribute to building the collective capacity of the UN community to advance prevention particularly as it relates to the Secretary-General’s vision for prevention. 

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April 2020

QUNO and PBSO convene a discussion on the impact of COVID-19 and the Gender and Youth Promotion Initiative

With the international community adjusting to the far-reaching implications of COVID-19, QUNO and the Peacebuilding Support Office (PBSO) convened a global virtual meeting with civil society organizations to discuss the impact of this health crisis on peacebuilding. The meeting was also a timely opportunity to learn more about this year’s annual Peacebuilding Fund’s (PBF) Gender and Youth Promotion Initiative (GYPI), including the impact of COVID-19 on the call and application requirements.  

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February 2020

QUNO co-hosts the third annual civil society briefing with Under-Secretary-General Menéndez

On 4 February, the Civil Society-UN Prevention Platform (the Platform) held its third annual informal, off the record briefing with Under-Secretary-General (USG) and Senior Policy Advisor, Ms. Ana María Menéndez. Ms. Menéndez has played a central role in Secretary-General António Guterres’s focus on prevention since starting the position in June 2017. 

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February 2020

QUNO co-hosts first of a series of discussions on Prevention

In February, QUNO was pleased to co-host the launch of the Civil Society-UN Prevention Platform’s  discussion series on prevention. The Platform’s timely discussions aim to support and contribute to building the collective capacity of the UN community in New York and beyond to advance prevention particularly as it relates to the Secretary-General’s vision for prevention.

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