BACKGROUND INFORMATION AND APPLICATION FOR MUNA 2015
WHAT IS MUNA?
The Model United Nations Assembly is a Rotary sponsored youth activity which mimics a meeting of the United Nations. A number of nations that hold membership in the UN are represented by delegations consisting of two year 11 students or year 10s if this is acceptable with their school.
REPRESENTING A COUNTRY AND SUGGESTING RESOLUTIONS FOR DEBATE
Each two person team will be allocated a country and provided ample opportunity to research that country and its views. Teams may express a preference for a particular country and where possible this will be granted. Students will be able to nominate issues/resolutions for debate. If the students are studying a particular country or a particular resolution issue at school, they should indicate this when applying. Every effort will be made to allocate those countries and items to support classwork and involve classmates in their MUNA preparation.
THE AGENDA AND RESEARCHING RESOLUTIONS SO AS TO DEBATE AND VOTE
Three or four weeks before MUNA an agenda of topics/resolutions selected by the MUNA committee will be prepared for debate and sent to the delegations. Students are required to research the view of their country on all agenda items so they can participate in debating issues of interest. It will not be possible for every delegation to participate in the debate on every item but they should prepare a view as they will have to vote on each resolution.
BEING SPEAKER ON A RESOLUTION/S
Each team will need to focus in detail on at least one resolution that they will be asked to speak to. These items will be allocated by the Committee to ensure each team presents on at least one resolution. If a delegation is unable to discover the view of the country they represent, the students are expected to use their imagination in determining what that view would be.
RULES OF DEBATE AND INTERESTING PRACTICES (BRIBES!)
Details of the rules of the meeting, interesting extras such as the practice of bribing officials with lollies and the programme for the weekend will be provided to participants in due course.
Each MUNA team of 2 students is sponsored by a Rotary Club and the Club covers the $210 cost of the team’s participation. This covers participation by two students plus a teacher or counsellor for the weekend and includes lunches, snacks, Friday night dinner and entertainment as well as a formal dinner on Saturday night and sundry materials. Schools should contact their local Rotary Club to arrange sponsorship.
WHEN AND WHERE PLUS TRAVEL AND ACCOMMODATION ISSUES
MUNA will be held from the afternoon of May 15, all day Saturday May 16 and the morning of Sunday May 17 at Macintyre High School, Swanbrook Road, Inverell in cooperation with hosts, the Rotary Clubs of Inverell and Inverell East. Teams must arrange their own travel to Inverell and can choose to arrange accommodation at their own cost if travelling with family, or can be billeted with Rotary or High School families in the area. All host families will be required to meet the Child Protection requirements.
TEAM COUNSELORS, ROTARIAN, TEACHER OR PARENT WHO MAY ACCOMPANY THE TEAM/S
Each team or school may bring a counselor who may be a school teacher, Rotarian or parent with them to the weekend. Accompanying counselors will need to fund their own accommodation. Billets for Counsellors can only be arranged after all students have been accommodated. Counselors’ lunches, snacks, tea and coffee at the venue and the dinner on Friday and Saturday nights are covered in the team fee. Other relatives and friends may attend as audience members but will need to pay for lunch and snacks if eating at the venue and will not be able to attend the Saturday evening United Nations dinner which is for delegates and counselors only. If they wish to attend the Friday evening dinner, they will be required to pay a fee of $10.00 per person.
SPREADING THE BENEFITS OF MUNA BEYOND INDIVIDUAL STUDENT PARTICIPANTS
When two students from your school participate as a team in the Model United Nations Assembly, they learn about international issues, how different countries and cultures interact and generally open their eyes to global issues. They benefit individually in terms of research, presentation and debating skills.
However, there are a number of ways that schools can ensure further spin-off benefits for a wider group of students. In 2015, we hope schools will consider the following as ways of spreading the benefits of having their students participate:
Have one of your local Rotary Clubs sponsor more than one team. There is a limitation on the total numbers of teams, but no restriction on where they come from other than their ability to come up with the $210 team registration. This is usually funded by the sponsoring Rotary Club. Teams are accepted on a first come, first served basis.
Arrange to have someone from your local Rotary Club come to the school and talk to year 11 students about MUNA. If you cannot get someone from the club then contact the MUNA District Chair to arrange a speaker at your school.
Ensure that students who participate are given the opportunity to address year 11 or the whole school about their experience upon their return from MUNA.
Develop a class project to support your team/s by including it in course work. Students could be allocated tasks as follows:
• researching the country your team is representing
• helping to formulate resolutions
• develop views on other teams’ resolutions so that their team is well informed for the Assembly debate.
This might be done as part of work on a particular country in history, geography or social studies units or as work on a particular issue such as climate change, poverty and development, human rights or refugee issues in Studies of Society and the Environment or Economics courses or as an exercise in preparing and debating a topic in English courses.
Classes can of course make good use of the internet and library resources but schools can also give consideration to having them:
• write to Australia-based Embassies of the country their team represents to seek materials and information on the country’s views on particular issues as well as guidance on English language websites with relevant policy information
• email UN agencies or government departments to get information on issues being debate
• invite a local expert along to talk about a country or a policy issue
• have a trial run in class by setting up teams to debate one or more issues.
Please note that NSW Education Policy supports a number of aspects that MUNA involvement can help schools deliver, including:
• activities aimed at student engagement and retention
• collaboration with other agencies such as the Department of Environment and Climate Change to maximise learning for sustainability
• activities which promote interaction with the school’s community
• integration of studies of Asia into the curriculum
• activities which help prepare students for active and productive work after school.