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Civil Society Unit | Department of Global Communications | United Nations

One-On-One with the President of the UN General Assembly

The President of the UN General Assembly H.E. Mr. Volkan Bozkir will share his reflections on the 75th Session of the UN General Assembly and civil society engagement.
Date: Friday, 19 February 2021
Time: 10:15 - 11:15 a.m. EST

Civil Society Briefing "Sustainable Fashion for All: Examining the Industry through the Lens of Social Justice"

Virtual Fashion Show and Panel Discussion organized with the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA), Fashion Revolution, Fordham University, and United Nations Association of New York
Date: 24 February 2021
Time: 9:30 - 11:30 a.m. EST

From UN News

59th Session of the Commission for Social Development – CSocD59

The 59th session of the Commission for Social Development (CSocD59) is taking place from 8 to 17 February 2021 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. The Commission is the advisory body responsible for the social development pillar of global development.

Priority Theme

Socially just transition towards sustainable development: the role of digital technologies on social development and well-being of all.

Emerging Issue

Social policy to promote a more inclusive, resilient and sustainable recovery: building back better post-COVID-19 for the achievement of the 2030 Agenda in the context of the decade of action and delivery for sustainable development

Women in science who are making a difference during the pandemic

It will soon be a year since WHO declared COVID-19 to be a pandemic. By now, every corner of the world has felt the devastating impact of the pandemic, and women and girls in science are on the front lines of response. They are healthcare workers and innovators. They are researching vaccines and pioneering treatments. They are leading us toward a safer world, and inspiring the next generation of girls to be forces of good in science and tech.

Cyberbullying: What is it and how to stop it

Read UNESCO's article to learn about 10 things teens want to know about cyberbullying here.

Exploring safe travel in the age of vaccines

2020 was the worst year in tourism history with 1 billion fewer international arrivals than in the previous year, due to an unprecedented fall in demand and widespread travel restrictions. A meeting of the Global Tourism Crisis Committee focused on the integration of vaccines into a harmonized approach to safe travel and launching a coordinated effort to boost confidence in the sector.

Protecting Lower-Income Countries with COVID-19 Vaccines Requires Global Solidarity

By Anuradha Gupta is Deputy CEO, Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance
Read full article

Virtual tours of the UN in Vienna

Virtual tours of the UN in Vienna, as well as virtual lecture programmes on topics ranging from nuclear safety to international organized crime, can now be booked online.
Learn more...

Youth, Peace and Security: A programming Handbook

The Handbook is a joint product of UNDP, UNFPA, PBSO and the Folke Bernadotte Academy.

The programming handbook builds on recent evidence and increasing momentum to prioritize youth-inclusive and youth-sensitive peace and security programming, as a core element of more sustainable and long-lasting peacebuilding efforts.

The handbook is intended to be used by country, regional and global teams in the United Nations system, but it can also provide insights and guidance to field practitioners beyond the United Nations, including other international or regional organizations, national counterparts, youth-led and youth-focused organizations, movements and networks, and peacebuilding organizations.
Learn more & read the Handbook

The UN Secretary-General has outlined his major priorities for 2021

UN Response to COVID-19 
Secretary-General's Policy Briefs
Global Humanitarian Response Plan COVID-19: United Nations Coordinated Appeal
COVID-19 Solidarity Response Fund for WHO: HELP FIGHT CORONAVIRUS

UNCTAD Update (Week of 6-12 February)

UNCTAD launched our new ECOSOC mandated Productive Capacities Index this week. It’s a nifty tool that will help guide economic policy and fight poverty. It measures countries' capacity to achieve social and economic transformation by tracking their productive capacities and their ability to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. It focuses on 8 key factors that are critical for economic performance: 1) natural capital; 2) human capital; 3) energy; 4) ICTs; 5) transport; 6) private sector; 7) institutions; 8) structural change.

Then, the latest Global Trade Update shows East Asian economies are driving global trade recovery. It found that while exports from the region grew by 12% in the 4th quarter of 2020 (year-over-year), negative trends continued for goods exported from most other regions.  Read more...

Invitations | Opportunities for Civil Society Participation

ECOSOC Youth Forum 2021

The Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) Youth Forum will be held on 7 and 8 April 2021. The modalities of participation will depend on the evolving spread of COVID-19 and its impact on travel restrictions as well as considerations on the safety, health and wellbeing of participants. More details...

UN Data Forum: Bern 2021 and a Forward Look at the United Nations Data Forum

Date: Thursday, 18 February 2021
Time: 9 - 10:15 a.m. EST
More information

Second Open Call for SDG Good Practices, Success Stories and Lessons Learned in the Implementation of the 2030 Agenda

ONLY ONE MONTH LEFT to submit your application during the second open call for SDG good practices, success stories and lessons learned in the implementation of 2030 Agenda! Online portal closes on 28 February 2021! 

Echoing the UN Secretary-General’s initiative of the Decade of Action to deliver the SDGs, the Second Open Call for SDG Good Practices is dedicated to identifying sustainable solutions to the world’s challenges, and to highlighting examples of good practices, including those that could be replicated or scaled-up by others across the globe.

All submissions will be reviewed by an Inter-Agency Team (IAT) of experts from 24 UN entities, and approved SDG Good Practices will be featured in the dedicated online database. 

For more information:

Click here to access the online portal for submission. The full application form can be viewed here.

Questions? Please, check the FAQ for more information.

Submit Your Application by 28 February 2021!

Global Youth Biodiversity Network Survey

he Global Youth Biodiversity Network (GYBN) has launched a survey that will bring together #youth voices for the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework!

As the youth constituency to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD), GYBN has been leading a Youth Engagement Roadmap for the Post-2020 Global Biodiversity Framework. Next year, GYBN will come together with the parties and other constituencies of the CBD to negotiate and agree upon this new Global Biodiversity Framework that will provide political commitments and guidelines to galvanize action for biodiversity for the next decade.

We must ensure the voices of the youth are heard in this new global framework for biodiversity!
➡️ Follow the link to take the survey in English, Spanish, or French:

Call to musicians to inspire action

Musicians around the world are joining ILO’s Music Against Child Labour Initiative to join the fight for a better future by dedicating concerts and songs to raise awareness and drive change.

UNEP opens 2021 nominations for prestigious Champions of the Earth Award

UNEP calls for nominees for the Champions of the Earth award – the UN’s highest honour for individuals and organizations that are safeguarding our environment and transforming societies.
Learn more...

Black History Virtual Tour @UN

Book a Black History Virtual Tour and learn how the lives of people of African descent have intertwined with the mission of the United Nations

Dates: February 2021, Wednesdays and Fridays
Time: 2:30 p.m. EST and upon request
More information

Youth4Climate: Driving Ambition | 28 - 30 September 2021

Convened by the Government of Italy, the event will take place from September 28th to 30th and provide young delegates an unprecedented opportunity to put forward ideas and concrete proposals on some of the most pressing issues on the climate agenda.
Almost 400 young people aged between 18 and 29 from the 197 member-countries of the UNFCCC (maximum limit 2 for country) will meet in 2021 in Milan, from 28 to 30 September 2021, to elaborate concrete proposals on topics that affect the negotiation process of Pre-COP26 in Milan (30 September - 2 October 2021) and COP26 in Glasgow (1 - 12 November 2021).
The selection of the young participants will be carried out by the Office of the UN Secretary General's Youth Envoy in collaboration with YOUNGO (the Youth Constituency at the UNFCCC), and an ad hoc Advisory Committee that is being set up. Italy will support the travel and accommodation expenses of the selected participants.

Learn more about the event

Apply to participate by 28 February 2021

Comic and cartoon competition

UN Women—together with the European Commission, Belgium, France, Mexico, as well as in partnership with Cartooning for Peace—is organizing a global comic and cartoon competition to mark the 25th anniversary of the groundbreaking Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action, which set out how to remove the systemic barriers that hold women back from equal participation in all areas of life. The Beijing Declaration and Platform for Action is a visionary agenda for the empowerment of women and girls, everywhere.
The submission deadline is 14 March 2021.
For details about the competition and how to participate, please click here
The Week Ahead at the UN: Follow meetings online - click here to see the schedule
Civil Society Corner

Film Screening and Discussion of "Glimpses in the Spirit of Gender Equality"

Join the Baha'i International Community for a film created to mark Beijing +25, that highlights the unique contribution young people are making at the grassroots and at the United Nations, to advance gender equality. 
Date: 17 February 2021
Time: 10:15 - 11 a.m. EST
The film screening will be followed by an open forum discussion with actor and gender equality proponent Penn Badgely, who is featured in the film, also known for his leading roles in "Gossip Girl" and "You".

Black History Month "Its Power, Preservation and Promise"

Organized by NGO Committee on Children’s Rights, A Substantive Committee of CONGO

Date: 18 February 2021
Time: 3:30 - 5:30 p.m. EST

GNEC Announcement

The Global NGO Executive Committee (GNEC) and the Innovation Academy at Rutgers Preparatory School are excited to announce an on-line platform focused on education and the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to which NGOs can supply information on their own SDG initiatives. The NGO materials on this platform will provide visibility and access to others. It will reach children, youth and educators in a safe, no-cost, professional environment while providing education on SDGs. NGOs should request an application form for submitting materials to Dr. Kevin Merges at or Dr. Rose Cardarelli at  

Survey on Migrant and Refugee Victims of Xenophobia and Intolerance in the Context of the Coronavirus Pandemic

Prepared by the NGO Committee on Migration (CoM)

In the context of the Coronavirus pandemic, the attached survey is being circulated by the NGO Committee on Migration, a member of the Conference of Non-Governmental Organizations (CoNGO) in consultative relationship with the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). Pleased be informed that the deadline for responding to the survey has been extended indefinitely to allow more organizations to contribute responses to the survey.

The survey, prepared by the NGO Committee on Migration’s Subcommittee on Xenophobia and Social Inclusion to assess the impact COVID-19 has had on the migrant population in relation to xenophobia and social exclusion, is available here in EnglishSpanish, and French. Please complete the survey, and forward it to your network(s). 

We would very much appreciate it if you could respond to it as soon as you can send and the survey out as widely and  as quickly as possible to your networks. We are seeking replies from NGOs, academia, civil society institutions and United Nations entities in order to obtain as comprehensive data as possible on this essential grassroots work. Please consult the attached survey for an account of how we plan to use the data. We will, of course, share all final reports and analyses with the responding organizations.  Such surveys have helped the UN move from a prime focus on policy to one that supports grassroots initiatives with a focus on leaving no one behind.

Thank you for your cooperation. We look forward to your response.
The NGO Committee on Migration,
Subcommittee on Xenophobia and Social Inclusion

Program "The United Nations Renewal: Sustainable Retrofit + Goals of a Modern Era Landmark"

Co-sponsored by the NGO Committee on Sustainable Development-NY with UN-Habitat - CSU
Date: 18 February 2020
Time: 12 p.m. EST
Invitation and Programme

UNA-NY WebTalk "Where Health Meets Justice: How Doctors and Lawyers Can Work Together for Human Rights"

Date: 18 February 2021
Time: 6 p.m. EST
More information

“Mother Language without Borders: Turkish” and celebrating 50th Anniversary of New York Atatürk School

Webinar Turkish Women League of America (TWLA), Assembly of Turkish American Associations (ATAA) and The Light Millennium (LM)
Date: 21 February 2021
Time: 12 - 2 p.m. EST
Join ZOOM ID: 977 0967 1995 | PASSWORD: Ataturk
Language: Turkish
More information

Message from the Esperanto Association on Occasion of the International Mother Language Day in 2021

Civil Society Forum 2021

Organized by the NGO Committee for Social Development During the 59th Session of the Commission for Social Development

Socially Just Transition Towards Sustainable Development: The

The NGO Committee for Social Development follows and echoes the work of the UN Commission for Social Development, amplifying the many voices that are left behind and highlighting local examples of resilience, solidarity and hope moving forward communities in spite of the systemic obstacles they face everyday. Click here to read and sign the Civil Society Declaration. 

For the first time ever, the NGO Committee will hold a 5-days Virtual Civil Society Forum (CSF 2021) with the support of the Friedrich Ebert Foundation and UN DESA. The CSF 2021 will include an all virtual Orientation and Networking event, three Thematic Sessions and a Closing Session. Please register separately for each event: Civil Society Forum 2021.
Sign the declaration

Youth Preparation Series Schedule
Join this growing network of young people working for gender equality, get to know one another, learn what is happening around the world and how to navigate the UN system.

UN Advocacy Training | 18 February, 12-2PM EST Register
Youth Activist Space | 25 February, Time TBD
BIPOC & Intersectionality Training | 4 March, Time TBD
Youth Activist Space: International Women's Day | 11 March, Time TBD

More information
Engagement opportunities from NGO CSW
DGC Civil Society Unit

One-On-One with the President of the UN General Assembly

The President of the UN General Assembly H.E. Mr. Volkan Bozkir will share his reflections on the 75th Session of the UN General Assembly and civil society engagement.
Date: Friday, 19 February 2021
Time: 10 - 11 a.m. EST

Civil Society Briefing "Sustainable Fashion for All: Examining the Industry through the Lens of Social Justice"

Virtual Fashion Show and Panel Discussion organized with the Unitarian Universalist Association (UUA), Fashion Revolution, Fordham University, and United Nations Association of New York
Date: 24 February 2021
Time: 9:30 - 11:30 a.m. EST

Coming Soon: Civil Society Survey Ahead of 2021 Communications Workshop

Annual Review becomes Biennial Review.
2020 Report by Civil Society Organizations Launched

Civil society organizations associated with the UN Department of Global Communications are now required to report on their activities every two years. Instead of Annual Review, the report is now called Biennial Review.

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the level of activity of the organizations may have been altered. That is why, this year, we are asking CSOs to report on at least one activity they have carried out in 2020 in response to COVID-19. Invitations to submit reports have been sent out via email. The deadline has been extended to 28 February 2021.
  • For more information on this year's report, please visit
  • If you think your organization has not received the invitation to submit the report, please email us at with the subject line "2020 Report"

Upcoming UN High-Level Opportunities for Civil Society Participation  

Call for Civil Society Climate Action Stories

Everyday around the world, civil society takes action on climate change that inspires others and benefits the planet. These stories of positive impact provide hope for the future.
As the world confronts the pandemic and embarks on recovery, there is growing recognition that the recovery must be a pathway to a green and sustainable society. Since there are many challenges ahead, good ideas should be widely exchanged. This is why the United Nations now calls for civil society organizations to share your stories.

 Submit Your Climate Action Story 

UN Department of Global Communications will highlight the achievements of civil society on behalf of the climate, the planet, and global well-being through social media posts and on our website*. We know your actions will inspire others. Working together, we can make a difference.
Stakeholder Opportunities supported by NGLS: Current Status
UN DGC Civil Society Twitter
UN DGC Civil Society Instagram
UN DGC Civil Society Facebook
UN DGC Civil Society Website

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Department of Global Communications
Civil Society Unit

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