How to work together with the UN

Jun 19, 2016

More than fifty representatives of civil society organizations, the private sector and other development partners attended the consultation organized last Thursday by the United Nations Country Team in Samoa. Photo credit: UNDP/F.Mondello/2016

More than fifty representatives of civil society organizations, the private sector and other development partners attended the consultation organized last Thursday by the United Nations Country Team in Samoa.

The objective of the consultation was to increase the understanding of United Nations’ work in Samoa and foster a dialogue on how the organization could establish more genuine and effective partnerships to advance the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals.

The main recommendations identified will be reflected in the United Nations Pacific Strategy (UNPS) 2018-2022, a document that outlines the collective response of the UN to the development challenges that Samoa and other Pacific Islands Countries face.

“This consultation represents an effort to engage with key partners and responds to the call for greater participation in shaping the role of the UN in the Pacific” – said Ms. Lizbeth Cullity, United Nations Resident Coordinator for Samoa, Niue, the Cook Islands and Tokelau.

“This process ensures that the new strategy will be consistent and aligned with national development priorities that need to be addressed in partnership with government, civil society, the private sector, the academia and the society at large” – she added.

Attendees were divided into four groups to discuss topics such as inclusive economic growth, nutrition, health and sustainable consumption, environment and climate change, education and equality.

The participants emphasized the need to open new channels of communication to integrate more effectively the perspective of the civil society and the private sector in the planning process of UN’s programmes. There was also a call to develop a framework to establish public-private partnerships and to reach out the communities on a more regular basis to join efforts and evaluate the impact of the interventions on the ground. Another recommendation was to build business skills and promote creative industries through formal education as a strategy to create jobs for talented youth.

In summary, development partners recognized the added value of the United Nations but also requested larger and more integrated programmes where the civil society and the private sector can play a more active role from planning to implementation and monitoring of national development plans.

Another consultation with Senior Officials from the Government of Samoa and Tokelau will be hosted by the UN Country Team on June 23rd at the Samoa Conference Center, TATTEE Building, Apia. Similar consultations will be undertaken in the Cook Islands and Niue around mid July.

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