Good morning, afternoon, or evening! I thank you all for joining us today. The GNEC
Board of Directors thanks the Department of Global Communications for their time and for including us in this review today.
This comes at an important moment for our community: a review and a look forward is essential during these strange times – and we also look forward to your helpful voice at the end of this discussion.
I am proud and humbled to be the president who shall usher in the 60th anniversary of this storied organization. And, what interesting times to live through together with our civil society community. In some ways, the pandemic has closed off civil society from meaningful interaction but in many other ways, COVID has forced a democratization of the UN, with online access in ways never offered previously. We are grateful for that silver lining in COVID’s dark cloud. It reminds us all to accept in this once-in-a-lifetime
moment: that which we cannot change while making the most of that which we can change.
We remain equally grateful to individuals within our community, like Margo Lazaro, the folks at C4UN, the Public Foundation, CoNGO, our two GNEC Vice Presidents, Dr. Murthy and Ms. Clopton, and others, too numerous to name here – for assiduously keeping
civil society united through the sharing of important information throughout the pandemic. Those civil society presenters should be lauded for their service to
our extended community.
At GNEC, we have taken the path of ‘producers,’ bringing new services to those NGOs associated with UN DGC. This new focus has involved many on the new board; in fact, I have never known this board to be more laser-focused on assisting the constituent
community of UN-vetted NGOs who are preparing and presenting their own programming … some in conjunction with the United Nations and even their own
member states: all of whom we hope to serve.
We also recognize that many on our subscriber list who will join us today are not associated with UN DGC, and we heartily urge you to do so at this time.
It is imperative that we all understand that civil society is one of the three important bases outlined in the United Nations Charter. The Missions and staff garner power and funding from member states, but it is civil society who are often the changemakers, at UNHQ, and worldwide.
The voices of our presenting partners have been among the strongest during the pandemic – and GNEC hopes to produce support as a help in their efforts.
To date, GNEC has worked on re-designing our website, now at GNEC.NGO, so it no longer features our story but better enables our community to tell their story. We will be regularly highlighting associated NGOs on our homepage and making our other new services more accessible going forward.
Our Zoom account will, with enough lead time and approval, be available to all the UNDGC associated NGOs. In fact, recently, the African Youth Movement and the Nigerian government utilized our free service to conduct a workshop on mitigating disruption of services during the pandemic. Without our service, this meeting would not have been able to take place on such a large platform.
Through our relationship with Rutgers Prep, we have created an active format for offering workshops and full courses related to the SDGs. We have populated the site with free courses that can be taken or led by associated NGOs: completely free of charge.
Should the coursework be fee-driven, the associated NGO will keep 100% of the income; GNEC will no longer charge NGOs for any service it offers to them. As the massive online open course platform expands, we also hope to incorporate courses from the SDG Academy on the site. Watch this space.
GNEC is currently moving forward to increase support for its in-kind services and potentially even create a base for re-granting of funds to associated NGOs, through an adjudication system we will develop in 2022. This support will begin with a podcast series, produced on Vimeo and YouTube where associated NGOs will be interviewed by host moderators. The end- result will be to share those podcasts with major television networks worldwide to increase the public relations and development tools for the NGOs. We are looking for a February 2022 launch date for the new podcast series.
As part of our internal strategic development plan, we are utilizing external surveys to assist with our massive re-branding campaign. Those surveys demonstrate the need to provide the nuts and bolts, humble support to those great presenters I mentioned earlier. That support has gone unfulfilled by this organization in recent years. In fact, this thrust has energized us, and the surveys show it is being well-received. As we
succeed further, we only hope for more opportunities to serve those in our community doing the daily excellent work that enabled them to receive UNDGC accreditation in the first place.
When you receive our surveys, please respond. If our services can help your associated NGO work better and stronger, approach us – and if you are not associated, our final plea is to encourage and help you associate, so the voice of civil society, already strong, can grow even more resounding and broad in coming years.
Once again, I thank our long-term partners at DGC for their interest in our cooperative work and mission. We shall continue to look forward to new and better ways to interface as your sponsors and supportive friends in the future.
14 December 2021
The Global NGO Executive Committee (GNEC) was founded in 1962 to promote a closer working relationship between the United Nations and the non-governmental organizations (NGOs) associated with it. GNEC acts as a liaison between the NGO community and the UN's Department of Global Communications (DGC). GNEC provides strategic guidance to help NGOs become more effective partners of the UN.
If you would like more info about NGO Reporter, or wish to subscribe: