The CommUNAcator

Greater Lansing United Nations Association
"Your Connection to the United Nations"

March, 2017

GL-UNA Stronger Than Ever!

As you may have noticed, GL-UNA's board has been working hard on our 2017 goals, which were determined at our Strategic Planning session in January. Our Fall membership survey and the board's informed understanding of current world issues also contributed to our decisions.

Our 2017 focal areas are:

  1. increased advocacy for the UN
  2. the refugee crisis
  3. expanding the diversity of membership and programs
  4. increasing membership engagement

Our 2017 goals are to:

  1. Utilize innovative means to communicate effectively with our members and to provide innovative opportunities for engagement.
  2. Increase our membership by number, diversity and level of engagement.
  3. Mobilize GLUNA members, associates, and friends to speak up about support for the US continuing their membership UN. Advocate for support of the UN and Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s.)
  4. Educate our community about the current refugee crisis and raise at least $30,000 for the "Adopt-a Future: Educate Refugee Children" campaign.
  5. Increase youth engagement in GL-UNA and in the UN.


Java Café-- Global Conversations has begun!

We initiated our “Java Café--Global Conversations” series, a new format for GL-UNA. These offer an informal opportunity for a brief presentation about current UN topics, followed by discussion. Our first Java Café, "Congress & the Crisis for the United Nations" was in February and our second, "Women as Leaders in the UN and the UN as Leaders in Women's Rights," will be on THURSDAY, MARCH 23, 7 p.m.- 8:30 p.m. at the East Lansing Public Library. We invite all of you to come and join the conversation!

We will of course continue our programs for UN-designated days, including Earth Day, UN Day, Human Rights Day and others. Our Earth Day program will be on Thursday, April 20 at 7 p.m. More details will soon be found at on the “Events” page. We hope to see you there!

Our Advocacy Action has never been stronger!

Our Advocacy team has been very busy reaching out to our members and friends with opportunities for each of us to advocate on behalf of the vital programs of the United Nations. They have also connected with our US senators and representatives regarding specific advocacy issues. The Advocacy team has plans to communicate through editorials and articles in our local newspapers as well. You too can advocate for the United Nations! Watch for action alerts via “Greater Lansing UNA” e-mail blasts.

Our membership is growing, but we need your assistance!

It is extremely important for us to involve as many people as possible in our efforts to advocate for the UN and to educate our community about its vital programs and work. Our Membership team is working on this, but we need your assistance:

With current proposals to drastically reduce US funding and participation in the work of the UN, there has been no time more urgent to be an active member of GL-UNA. Our advocacy efforts matter! If you are not already a member, please join now.

Also, consider who else you can introduce to GL-UNA. Bring them to our events; tell them about our organization; show them our web site, and our Facebook page. Get them connected with us on Twitter @lansinguna. A personal invitation is very powerful. See how many of your friends YOU can get involved! Together, we can make a difference. Thank you!!

It's time for nominations 

Global Education Awards!  

Do you know of a teacher and/or a high school senior who has promoted efforts in international education, created a global spirit within their communities and are celebrating diversity?  Would you like to honor them? If so, we encourage you to nominate them for a Global Education Award. Read the criteria for teacher nominations here and for student nominations here. You can download the nomination form for teachers here and the form for student nominations here. All this information is also available on the Education tab at our website,  Nominations are due by Friday, April 28, 2017.


HELP EDUCATE REFUGEE KIDS - Adopt-A-Future campaign update

We in Michigan and the Greater Lansing region have a unique opportunity to reach across the world to a United Nations High Commission on Refugees (UNHCR)-supported refugee camp in eastern Kenya and fund an additional classroom for the Horseed Primary School in the Kakuma refugee camp. The camp has over 75,000 boys and girls of school age. But less than half attend school due in large part to the fact that UNHCR does not have funding to educate all of them.  They are part of a huge refugee camp complex sheltering some 185,000 people, many of them families with children. This is where WE can help.

The UNHCR faces the challenges of overcrowded schools, dilapidated facilities, under-resourced classrooms, and a lack of trained teachers in these camps. Through our gifts we can help meet these challenges head on.

The United Nations Association of the USA (UNA-USA) and its local chapters, like ours in Greater Lansing, have agreed to partner with UNHCR and raise at least $30,000/chapter to fund additional classrooms for these eager-to-be-educated refugee children. The funds we raise and send to UNHCR will be matched by a generous international donor, thus doubling our impact. This fundraising campaign is titled Adopt-A-Future (AAF) because the future of these children is at stake.

Since the local AAF campaign kick-off last October, over $3,000 in donations have been received and outreach to more individuals and organizations is under way. A monthly donation pledge program has been designed and implemented in cooperation with UNA-USA. Single or recurring donations can be made by credit card on the website (please select Greater Lansing chapter), or by check payable to UNA/Adopt-A-Future and mailed to UN Foundation, P.O. Box 96397,  Washington, D.C. 20090-6397

We encourage supporters to consider monthly donations of $25 or more by individuals as well as fundraising projects yielding $1,000 or more by organizations or service groups. Such giving can make a huge difference in the lives of these children. Smaller donations are very helpful as well.

To help spread the word, you can also go to, print copies of the AAF brochure and invite friends, family and organizations you know to join in reaching out to help. 

Thank you for your help to educate refugee children!

Watch for the next CommUNAcator in June.

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