The Second UNESCO Forum on Global Citizenship Education (GCED), Paris, 28-30 Jan. 2015

AFS International, thanks to their close cooperation with UNESCO, was invited to the “Second UNESCO Forum on Global Citizenship Education (GCED): Building peaceful and sustainable societies: preparing for post-2015″ which took place at the UNESCO Headquarters in Paris from the 28 to 30 January 2015.

The event aimed at gathering all stakeholders in the field of Global Citizenship Education to shape the Global citizenship dimension of the education goal “Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all” within the UN post-2015 development agenda to be adopted in September 2015 in UNGA.

AFS was represented by Hazar Yıldırım from AFS Intercultural Programs, Eva Lestant, Alexandra Llouquet, Camille Jiminy, Emilie-Marie Hornus, Magdalena Steringer, Michel Antoine and Saman Hosseini from AFS France, and Alexandra Cordeiro (AFS Portugal) from EFIL.



The event was organised by the Division of Education for Teaching, Learning and Content of the UNESCO Education Sector and hosted representatives from all over the world such as GCED experts, teachers and educators, universities and research institutions, UN agencies, Permanent Delegations to UNESCO, policy makers, media, private sector, civil society organisations and Youth Representatives. AFS and EFIL were part of the Youth representatives, together with the France-Québec Office for Youth, UNESCO Dutch Youth Representatives (Dutch National Youth Council), EU-Africa Chamber of Commerce (Pan African Youth Network on the Culture of Peace), SAfAIDS, UN Academic Impact Korea, The Global Experience, GLOBI, AFS and others.

For two and a half days the GCED was discuss in three plenary sessions and twenty concurrent sessions with subjects like intercultural and interfaith dialogue, languages and communication, global health and GCED, sustainability education through GCED, peace and human rights education to GCED, etc. It was possible to learn about some successful of GCED education in several environments, and how it was important for creating a positive impact in the communities.

During the Forum, there was the opportunity for a meeting with the Youth Delegates to build a Youth Statement as an outcome of the Forum. For the statement building, the Youth Delegates from AFS had the chance to share the statement built by AFS volunteers at the 100 Years Young, Youth Workshop & Symposium. After one and an half days of discussion, teamwork with such an amazing and inspiring people, including some lack of sleep, the Youth Statement was presented at the plenary where we had the chance to speech and literally to take a stand for Youth Education.


youth rep at UNESCO

The expected outcomes were achieved: concrete inputs into the emerging Framework for Action on Education post-2015 in the lead up to the World Education Forum 2015 in May 2015 in Korea; key issues related to GCED in relation to peace discussed and documented; shared good policy and practice for the implementation of GCED, enhanced partnership and networking, especially among teachers and educators.

For more information please check the Forum website.

Alexandra Cordeiro, AFS Portugal – Member of EFIL European Pool of Trainers


The Regional Ministerial Conference on Education Post 2015 Development Goals- European and North American States, Paris, 19-20 Feb.

Regional Conferences where held all around the world in preparation of the World Education Forum which will be held on 19– 22 May 2015 in Incheon, Republic of Korea, and where AFS International will be present.

Thanks to the recommendation of the European Youth Forum and the previous experience of AFS International with UNESCO’s initiatives on Global Citizenship Education, EFIL was invited to the Regional Ministerial Conference for European and North American Stateson 19 – 20 February at the UNESCO Headquarters in Paris, France, and was represented by Stefan Ubiparipović (AFS Serbia), Member of the European Pool of Representatives.

This Ministerial Conference gathered the diplomatic delegations of Pan – European and North American States, representatives of Multilateral Organizations and the representatives of the NGO – Civil Society and Youth sector. In particular, Education International, AEGEE, European Students Union, the European Youth Forum.

The agenda of the conference was focused on the future of education after 2015 with the goal “Ensure inclusive and equitable quality education and promote lifelong learning opportunities for all”. The most active Member States of the UNESCO were the delegates of the United States of America, UK, Canada and other as Belgium, France and the Russian Federation. There is no clear explanation why other countries do not wish to speak about the problem of education, but what is clear is that less than 10 countries are leading a debate in this field (out of 40 represented at the Conference).





Stefan had an opportunity to speak in front of the participants in Paris and explain what are the opinions and values AFS and EFIL stand behind, in particular the exchange of ideas, values between different nations and intercultural dialogue overall, the need to include intercultural exchanges and Global Citizenship Education in every school curriculum worldwide. This chance granted EFIL the privilege to contribute to the Paris statement with every participant agreeing that intercultural exchange and dialogue have to be practiced more in order to have the strong foundations for sustainable future and eradication of rising extremism worldwide.

During the breakout sessions at the conference, EFIL’s representative had an another chance to speak and to point out the problem of Youth exclusion from the important decision making processes and the low Media and Governance support in defense of intercultural values. Reference was made to the Youth Statement of the Second UNESCO Forum on Global Citizenship Education and to the Recommendations of the 100 Years Young, Youth Workshop & Symposium.

Stefan Ubiparipović , AFS Serbia – Member of the European Pool of Representatives

For more info [email protected]