South Australia Conference 2014

By · 03 April, 2014 · Features

From the 14th-16th of March, roughly 90 Year 10-12 students from high schools across South Australia congregated for the  annual SA Conference – a weekend-long UN Youth event run entirely by young people for young people.  The weekend was jam packed with workshops, guest speakers and a Model UN debate to explore the notion of  ‘A Global Democracy’. 

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Daniel Lyas from Unley High School and Blackfriars Priory School’s Owen Nicholson attended last month’s conference in Adelaide and both agree that the whole weekend was a fantastic opportunity.

 Daniel Lyas – Unley High School

Recently, I was privileged to attend the UN Youth SA Conference in Adelaide. It appealed to me, as there were lots I didn’t know about politics and the theme of the 2014 conference – “A Global Democracy”. It was a fantastic opportunity to meet like-minded people and learn so much about the world I live in. My fellow delegates inspired, taught and showed me many new things, which was why this experience was so worthwhile.

The UN Youth facilitators who organised and ran the conference were so enthusiastic and great people to share the time with. The amount of hard work and effort that these people put into the conference was evident.

Attending workshops, Q & A Panels and even an International Crisis Simulation were some of the many fun and informative activities that made up the three-day conference

Overall, the experience was fun, entertaining and intriguing. The people I met will definitely stay in my life for years to come! I recommend all young people to seriously consider taking an interest in politics and events such as the conference as it is experiences like this that completely change your view of the world.

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Owen Nicholson – Blackfriars Priory School

From the 14th to 16th of March 2014, Gabriel Rus, Timothy Tedmanson and I attended the UN Youth Conference at the Nunyara Centre in Belair. I was incredibly excited to go to my first conference since the UN Evatt Competition in 2013 and signed up within the first 10 minutes of registrations opening; I believe I was the first.

I have so much to write about but I’ll keep it short. Firstly, we learned so much from each other and from our fantastic guest speakers, including the U.S. Consul-General in Melbourne.

In the Model United Nations debates I represented Antigua and Barbuda. These were so engaging; they included hilarious and fantastic speeches, engaging delegate drama, extremely sassy chairpersons and just an abundance of fun.

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The Interactive Crisis Simulator challenged us to see what happens when you mix a council of Egyptian military generals, Islamists and secularists. I was the Egyptian Air Force General and I was proudly the first to die after trying to defect to Jerusalem. Chaos ensued after that with half the Egyptian Military being assassinated by Israeli Paratroopers and the other half converting to Buddhism, fleeing to Nauru and trying to ask them for Nukes. It was incredibly fun and in the end we all lost because Egypt just became a colony of Israel.

The fun part was the Social Night/Election Night. We started that off with the most hilarious and fun game called the Priest of the Parish with some very dedicated and loud facilitators. After that, we moved onto the party and I haven’t danced that much in my entire life. We ended that in a harmonious circle with a lovely sing-along of Bohemian Rhapsody.

After that we realised there was actually an election going on, so I did the honours of switching on the TV and saw that nail-biting result. All together we watched in both fear and joy; I watched in sorrow as I saw Blackfriars old scholar, David O’Loughlin struggling in the seat of Adelaide.

After the entire conference ended, I witnessed social media explode in a sea of friend requests on an unprecedented scale.

I encourage as many students to attend the 2015 Conference as well as the range of UN Youth events this year.


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