Observing International Day of Peace at the UN
On Friday March 26th, over a thousand students from seven countries participated in a United Nations Youth Conference in observance of the International Day of Remembrance of the Victims of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade. Several hundred junior and high school students from the New York metropolitan area, and many more from across the United States attended the webinar at the UN Headquarters in New York. The theme was “Expressing Our Freedom Through Culture.”
The event, organized by the Educational Outreach Department of the United Nations, treated the participants to a Slide show on Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade, and excerpts from “Slave Routes: A Global Vision”, a UNESCO film produced by Dr. Sheila Walker, who also moderated the conference. The conference featured student presentations through essays, dance, songs and spoken word, promoted open discussion, commentary and questions from all sites from their disparate locations. A Poem and Rap “Defining Blackness” presented by American students opened the students’ segment. Students from the Gambia followed with “Remembering the Impact of Slavery and the Transatlantic Slave Trade in the Gambia through Intercultural Dialogue” consisting of Slavery Song, Poem and Readings.
The United Kingdom students’ presentation focused on “The Contribution of Freed Slaves to British Culture” while students from Trinidad and Tobago presented “Celebration” in Dance, Poems including “Roll De Drums” and “The Legacy”, and Drumming titled “Rhythm of The People”. Ghanaian students presented the main Lecture of the Day: “Expressing our Freedom through Culture”. Cuban students presented “Amistad America” and finally, the Jamaica students closed out with their presentation.
“This is a very exciting opportunity for young people to get involved directly with the United Nations. It is important to show students that we can all come together for a common purpose in what is rapidly becoming a truly global society.”
- Dr. Gwendolyn Lee, the National President of The Links, Incorporated
The links, Incorporated sponsored the participation of three hundred American students from across the US to the conference. AfrobeatRadio covered the UN event in partnership with the Links, Inc.