63rd UN DPI/NGO Conference

Have spent the last couple of days volunteering at the “Advance Global Health” conference here in Melb (couldn’t make it today…). The most tweeted topic in Melbourne atm.

It was nothing like I expected. But informative. Lots of nations represented (not so surprising).

“Together we have not found all the answers, but we have clarified many questions.” Chris Varney

A little surprised at how many people there were who seemed to have come simply with their own agendas rather than being there to contribute and share ideas in the hopes of forming a more united front to achieve the MDG’s. But also some very good voices being heard.

Highlights:

– TIM COSTELLO’s PLEA FOR PAKISTAN. watch/read here. So glad to see something like this come out of the conference. Definitely best and most inspiring highlight.

Barbara Flick Nicol‘s opening ceremony speech.

– Hearing what Che Guevara’s daughter (Dr Aleida) had to say

– Meeting some other lovely volunteers

– Having to take half my clothes off just to get through security cos apparently they all have metal in them

– Tim Costello (this was before his ‘plea’ was delivered) speaking out about the ‘blind spot’ the media has had regarding the devastation in Pakistan…whilst the cricket match fixing scandal made front page headlines. Hear, hear.

– Hearing from people who work in Catherine Hamlin’s Fistual Hospital in Ethiopia. Although disappointed to not hear Dr Catherine Hamlin herself.

– Dr. Claudio Schuftan. Don’t know much about him at all and didn’t agree with everything he said, but very much appreciated the way he threw some interesting thoughts out there and approached things from a completely different angle than the norm, and challenged the whole origin of the MDG’s (apparently rehashed ideas from the 1970’s…)

– Getting a feel for how these big international conferences work. (And also how they don’t work…).

– Free food. Mmm. And loads of yum tea. However this felt a little uncomfortable considering we were sitting around talking about people who have no food.

– Hanging out with Marita.

– Getting a clearer idea of the kind of work I would like to end up doing. And what kind I would rather not.
🙂

follow conference updates and related events here and follow on twitter with #achieveMDGs or #UNDPI

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