The Ghana United Nations Students and Youth Association (GUNSA) has hosted its first plastics forum and networking event. 

The event hosted by the Adisadel College GUNSA member branch in the Canterbury Hall on their campus in Cape Coast had CEO of Allianz Life Insurance Ghana Limited, Gideon Ataraire, as its keynote speaker.

The First National Vice President of the Association, Eric Lutterodt welcomed everyone on behalf of the National Executive Committee to the First Decade of Action forum.

The forum was held under the theme ‘Maximizing the voice of the youth in building the future we need.’

Mr Lutterodt put the campaign in context and introduced the speakers.

The forum discussed ways in which young people can play an active role in the implementation of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

It also addressed how the youth can best communicate on the Agenda, bringing on board the innovative use of social media and communication tools.

It featured brainstorming sessions, interactive panels and discussions, providing youth representatives with an opportunity to voice their opinion, share ideas, and to think together about specific issues of relevance to youth in the context of implementing the 2030 Agenda. 

In a statement by Mr Ataraire, he said, “We know there is a huge public desire to reduce the impact plastic is having on our environment and it is important that young people understand the impact and how they can be more sustainable and we are keen to lead this campaign.”

“This partnership will see GUNSA members maintaining a Green environment and awards will be presented to branches that lead the campaign in various ways on the SDG goals 12,13 and 14 which talks on responsible consumption and production, Climate Action and Life below water respectively.”

 Allianz are a key supporter of the Plastic Free City and holders of the Best Company Award for Promoting Good Sanitation and Hygiene Practices at the Sustainability & Social Investment Awards in December 2019.

 Among the questions posed was “Plastic water bottles: How did we get to where we are today?” and “Who owns the transition?” The presentations were followed by a panel discussion and Q&A 

The event was attended by representatives from GUNSA member branches and we welcomed several other executives from Allianz Insurance.

It was followed by a networking session and the forum forms the first of series of forums looking at the SDG and the role of the youth in leading the discussions into building a better a resilient future for all. 

The National President of the Association, KwashieKlu-Duvor who also serves on the National Adhoc planning committee for the 75th Anniversary of the United Nations Day in a media briefing called for collaborations between businesses, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration and the UN.

He believes this will help deal with the challenge to reduce and eliminate unnecessary single-use plastics.

The forum is in partnership with the Foreign Ministry and forms part of activities to mark the 75th Anniversary of the United Nations.

GUNSA will also in July host delegates from all of its branches at the Annual National Congress scheduled for July this year.