On Sunday April 10th, the Young Ambassadors School hosted its third MUN Conference of the year, making history in the process. The conference featured some of the youngest students to ever participate in a Model UN in Israel—fifth and sixth graders from elementary schools around Petah Tikva.

The conference consisted of four committees. Three were held in English, and dealt with ISIS, Human Rights in Saudi Arabia, and a hypothetical Israeli strikes on Iran. The fourth and largest group, held in Hebrew, was that of the 5th-6th graders to address the Syrian conflict.

As with prior conferences, the Young Ambassadors partnered with the Interfaith Encounters Association for the event, and were joined by students from other cities (Modi’in, Tel Aviv, Kfar Kasem and Umm Al-Fahem).

After several hours of debates, the awards ceremony was held. Eden Peri and Mika Galperin from Bar Lev Elementary School; Uri Haimovitch, and Itay Ozer from Kaplan Elementary School; Arielle Lieberman and Oz Alfy from Yachad Modi’in; Austen Hamilton from Tabeetha High School, and Almog Vilder, Sarah Frydman, Niv Geva and Tamar Shahar were awarded for their participation at the conference.

Yaniv Sofer, a fifth-grader at Elimelekh Kaner Elementary School, had his work cut out for him as the Syrian delegate. Interviewed after the conference, he explained that through preparing for the conference he had “learned about the Syrian conflict, how it can affect everyone of us, and about the Kurds and other groups involved,” and that it was “really interesting to experience how the UN tries to resolve conflicts like these.”

Ofir Malka, who represented Spain in the same committee, said that he “enjoyed the conference and learned about the Syrian conflict. I learned to negotiate and speak diplomatically.”

Ariel Sefti, who represented Pakistan, agreed with Ofir. “I learned about Syria and the war going on there. I enjoyed encountering a new topic, and enjoyed participating.”

The older students agreed with the younger delegates. Irad Herman, who represented Jordan in the Human Rights Committee, said “I learned a lot about respecting other opinions. It was very nice to meet other teenagers who came to find resolutions to global issues.” His teacher, Sassie Yona, who has brought her students from Modi’in to each of the three conferences this year, added that she was also impressed by the level of discourse: It was amazing for me to see how clever these kids are, how educated they are on important global topics, and how well they are able to think on their feet. They are required to present opinions which they do not necessarily agree with, and this is very difficult.”

For more coverage of the conference, see the articles in the Algemeiner and Diplomacy.co.il 

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