August 27th, 2015
The opportunity to give a speech at the UN General Assembly was preceded by my participation in the essay contest “Many Languages, One World,” organized by ELS Educational Services, Inc. and United Nations Academic Impact (UNAI). The competition implied two stages, initially we wrote an essay in one of the six UN official languages (English, French, Spanish, Arabic, Russian, Chinese). I wrote my essay in French which in my opinion is one of the most beautiful and melodious languages that inspires me; a language I studied for 12 years at high school. As a result, competitors, shortlisted for the written paper, were invited to a Skype interview with project organizers to demonstrate language proficiency. I was interviewed by Ms. Kathleen Stein-Smith, Chair of the American Association of Teachers of French (AATF) Commission on Advocacy. Overcoming successfully the two stages of the competition, I have been selected as one of the 70 winners of the Many Languages, One World International Student Essay Contest and Global Youth Forum from over 3500 students who initially participated in the contest. Thus, began one of the most unique and beautiful experiences of my life.
I traveled to the United States for the first time and the purpose of the visit was quite impressive, to attend the Many Languages, One World Global Youth Forum at Adelphi University in Garden City, from July 20-26, 2015 and to speak at the General Assembly of the United Nations. My experience in the US started great! At the passport control, explaining the purpose of the visit to the officer, he exclaimed: “Wow, good luck, Daniela!” So, the first impression was very nice and gave me courage. Then, I enjoyed the most wonderful days with the 70 winners of MLOW contest, young activists, leaders of their countries, students of various fields and specializations. We shared experience and inspired each other.
The program was full of interesting activities and interactive discussions in working groups led by facilitators. The week culminated on July 24 with our speeches at the UN! At UN headquarters, emotions overwhelmed me, everything seemed like a dream. Huge hall where the assembly is held, simultaneous interpreters, officials seated at their desks… like scenes from movies. I tried to catch every second of those important moments. My speech, presented in French, reflected the goal number 16 of the United Nations Post-2015 Sustainable Development Agenda: Promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels. I mentioned the importance of freedom, peace and security, respect for all and international cooperation. Good governance and the rule of law at the national and international levels are essential for sustained, inclusive and equitable economic growth, sustainable development and the eradication of poverty. Also, I proposed to promote a culture of peace, and peace education in schools to understand the process of acquiring the values and developing the attitudes, skills, and behaviors to live in harmony with oneself, with others and with the natural environment. In this way, educational institutions will contribute to the formation of a set of values to the younger generation. I am glad that my speech was appreciated by the officials of the General Assembly, who congratulated me.
I spent a week in New York. Being caught in the preparations for the speech and activities of the Global Youth Forum, I enjoyed the beauty and immensity of this city only two days. Nevertheless, I admired the most important tourist attractions like the Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, Times Square, the American Museum of Natural History, 9/11 Memorial. Therefore, I want to return to this US metropolis and discover the most important financial city in the world. There, I realized the saying “Time is money”, because, actually, New York never sleeps.
In conclusion, I would like to thank the organizers for this amazing opportunity and to transmit a big hug to my colleagues, I miss them! I realized that when you want something, all the Universe conspires in helping you to achieve it. “
A short fragment of my speech in French: “ La paix n’est pas l’absence de guerre, c’est une vertu, un état d’esprit, une volonté de bienveillance, de confiance, de justice. À mon avis, il ne peut y avoir de paix sans développement, ni de développement sans paix. Nous ne pouvons pas éliminer la pauvreté, ni atteindre un développement durable sans traiter les conflits et l’insécurité: d’importants écarts de performance. La paix entre les nations est l’objectif de nombreuse ONG, associations pacifistes et organisations internationaux comme L’ONU. La paix, la justice et une gouvernance efficace sont les catalyseurs du développement. Tous les États devront réduire les risques de conflit et d’insécurité en promouvant la réduction de la corruption, l’égalité d’accès à la justice et à la sécurité et la participation de tous les groupes sociaux à la vie politique. Selon moi, la diplomatie et la coopération internationale sont les instruments de la paix dans le monde et le moyen le plus efficace pour combattre le racisme, la xénophobie et l’intolérance. Il faut considérer et suivre les mots de Mère Teresa: “La paix commence avec un sourire, faites-le pour la paix!”.
Daniela Moisei is from Moldova and graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Finance & Banking from the Academy of Economic Studies of Moldova. She has been a radio presenter at Moldova’s national radio station for the past 5 years. She is President of the Students Council, coordinator of the project: “Students today, business women tomorrow,” a school for young entrepreneurs and volunteers of the International Center “La Strada”, aimed at combating human trafficking, and of the NGO “Youth for Right to Live”. In the future, Daniela plans to complete her master’s degree, and would like to work in a capacity that fosters connections between Moldova and the rest of the world. “My hobby is reading, it relaxes me, encourages me to think and expands my horizons.” firstname.lastname@example.org