MMS & The UN Newsletter May & June 2019


Dear Readers,

In May the Religious at the UN (RUN) had one day retreat highlighting the Eco spirituality and our ministry at the UN. 

Each year on 5 Junethe world celebrates the World Environment Daywhich is also the birthdate of UN Environment Program. This year the main celebrations is in China and the theme is #BeatAirPollution. Clean air is a human right, and a necessary pre-condition for addressing climate change as well as achieving many Sustainable Development Goals. Air pollution does not only damage human health, it also hampers the economy in many ways.

listen to this 15-year-old Alexandria Villasenor speak at the event.

Breathe Life, a campaign by the Climate and Clean Air Coalition, the World Health Organization and UN Environment, is running initiatives in 55 cities, as well as numerous countries and regions, benefiting over 153 million citizens. For example, campaign partners energized the public through a sporting challenge that saw 55,000 people pledge to commute by bicycle or on foot.

187 countries that signed an agreement in UN Geneva to regulate plastic waste trade in a global effort to curb plastic pollution though U.S. was not part of it.

8 June -World Oceans Day– This year, the theme for World Ocean’s Day is “Gender and the Ocean”, an opportunity to explore the gender dimensions of humankind’s relationship with the oceans.

12 June—The World Day Against Child Laborgives attention to the extent of child labor in the world while inviting efforts to bring about its end. 2019 theme: Children shouldn’t work in fields, but on dreams.   Read more :

June 7: World Food Safety Day focuses on dangers of contamination: Approximately 600 million people around the world become ill after eating contaminated food each year and around 420,000 die, according to World Health Organization statistics. The United Nations has charged the WHO, along with the UN Food and Agriculture Organization with addressing this issue as it marks the world’s inaugural World Food Safety Day.

A moral issue and a challenge: Food loss and waste – primarily in developed countries – stands in stark contrast to widespread undernourishment – mainly in developing countries. Around 821 million people, or one in every nine, went hungry in 2017. Meanwhile, around a third of the food produced for humans is lost or wasted – about 1.3 billion tons each year.

UP coming event: 

  1. July 9-18 High Level Political Forum, (HLPF) Deadline to Register: June 15
  2. Online Course by Pachamama: Intensive online course (price is whatever you wish to donate)- a compelling curriculum aimed at both personal and planetary transformation & highly recommended – the next intensive starts in August 2019 for more information:

Signs of Hope:

  • Scientists Found Flute Music helps to build the brains of premature Babies, 
  • Systems thinking as a solution:  Renowned physicist and systems theorist Fritjof Capra, Ph.D., has issued an urgent video message about the critical importance of systems thinking for achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). guided by the realization that our global problems are systemic problems — and are best approached considering this reality.
  • The UN General Assembly passed a resolution establishing August 22 as the International Day Commemorating the Victims of Acts of Violence Based on Religion or Belief, Christians are the most persecuted religion in the world.  
  • A 69-year-old retired pharmacist in England has collected 120,000 cigarette butts from the streets of a seaside resort and turn them into works of anti-smoking art.
  • Amidst many depressing situations at the UN and around the world according to Angela Zarro of SID  “positive signs are that people’s awareness has raised, and civil society is stronger than ever”. 
  •  A California restaurant is hoping to bring friends and family members together by asking them to lock away their cell phones in exchange for a free pizza. The Curry Pizza Company is offering the “Talk to Each Other Discount” to every group of four people or more. Huraaaai! 

Introducing Eleanor: My name is Eleanor Wade and I am the 2019 Summer Intern at Medical Mission Sisters.  I am a rising senior at NYU Shanghai studying humanities, global public health, and Mandarin Chinese.  I am originally from Newark, Ohio, I spent my two undergrad years in Shanghai, China, and a semester in Accra, Ghana.  I am deeply passionate about fighting for gender equality, environmental protection, and sustainable development. I greatly look forward to learning and contributing to MMS work at the UN over the course of the summer. This experience is providing me with the opportunity to engage in a deeper understanding of the SDGs and the multifaceted approaches being taken in reaching them.

Warm wishes: Celine & Eleanor