My City+20

150 heads of state. 50,000 accredited visitors. Many more to attend the parallel civil society meetings. A budget of $430 million. It is clear that Rio+20 is going to be a huge event. The head of logistics responsible for the summit, Mr. Laudemar Aguiar, even predicts it will be "the largest conference in UN history, surpassing Copenhagen 2009."

But Mr. Aguiar forgot the biggest group of participants to Rio+20 in his calculations. The ones that will not be present in Rio, but are already preparing heavily for it in their own communities by spreading the message and topics of the conference, teaching their peers about sustainable development and international negotiations, as well as collecting opinions and compiling positions.

Youth are also mobilising towards Rio+20. First initiated at the European Youth Congress in Slovenia, and further developed at Sciences-Po University in France, the MyCity+20 project is now reaching out to cities all over the world. From Paris to Colombo, and from New York to Kampala, youth in every continent are setting up simulations of Rio+20, in order to mobilise their friends and create local actions on sustainable development.Mycity20_logo

My City+20 is an umbrella concept as well as an informal platform, in order to motivate and support other cities to create their own simulation of Rio+20. Strong in diversity, all the local initiatives share a common vision of young people taking action in the field of sustainable development. We aim to achieve this ambitious vision by setting ourselves three goals:

1. to learn about global sustainable development issues, through a simulation of Rio+20;
2. to give youth the opportunity to take action in their local community; and
3. to show we are ready to be involved in the transition towards a sustainable society.

Within this common vision, the diversity of action can be quite big. Already within our team for Rotterdam+20, people have different reasons for joining. One partner wanted to collect opinions from Dutch youth as a mandate for their youth delegates, another wanted to apply their simulation model to sustainable development, and I wanted to organise an event to bring Rio+20 closer to my students' organisation.
We are all convinced that MyCity+20 offers a unique opportunity to do all of this, so you can see the concept is rather broad and easily adapted to your specific situation and needs.

Does this concept of a youth simulation of the Rio+20 summit appeal to you? Do you want to mobilise your friends and set your community on the path to a more sustainable society? Then do not hesitate any longer, and start organising your MyCity+20 initiative today! Your capital, your home town, or even your high school or university, we are waiting for all of you to join us and put your community on the map of MyCity+20!

For any questions and information, take a look at mycityplus20.blogspot.com, or contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Mathieu Soete,
Rotterdam+20

 
 
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