The Invisible Messengers

Al-Quds Al-Arabi

In the hectic environment of the World Health Organization (WHO), all around the room there was a myriad of kids wearing suits, dresses, and fancy shoes that, eventually, they all merge to create one gray, black, and navy blur of colors. Amongst them, note passers could be seen if you look just hard enough. They are visible in the eyes of who look but invisible to the busy delegates.

Note passers, the innocent messengers of the committee. Although, no one seems to take into account the great power they possess. Delegates put their complete trust in complete strangers regarding completely important issues. Knowing this, some note passers tend to utilize their power. Whether for malicious intent or just for the fun of it, delegates do get exposed for the shortest of moment until the piece of paper is passed to the person it was being delivered to. Even more so, the interesting part for note passers is not how Algeria is trying to ally with Ireland, it is the written flirts and the occasional winky face drawn on the inside of the tiny paper.

One note passer in the World Health Organization (WHO), who asked to remain anonymous, stated, “The first few notes are fine. However, I would draw the line on passing chocolates to delegates.” After hearing the statement, Al-Quds Al-Arabi asked the delegate to elaborate, to which the delegate replied, “I’m pretty tired of countries mixing business with pleasure. I did contemplate just reading the whole interaction [made through notes] out loud.”

After the brief interview with the anonymous note passer, hopefully the situation will be brought to light and be no more.


Education: The Solution to Everything

Al-Quds Al-Arabi

With more and more refugees bustling into and out of different nations across the globe, one is left to wonder what will become of issues such as maintaining an adequate supply of sanitary water and edible food, and monitoring and addressing of various health concerns, such as AIDS and tuberculosis. One of the primary driving forces to combat these kinds of problems is, of course, the UN’s very own World Health Organization (WHO).

In the first and second committee sessions, delegates attempted to tackle the aforementioned matters and bustled to make their voices heard. The tension in the room was palpable. The more powerful countries appeared to prefer to fund, but not take in refugees while the lesser developed nations vied for special treatment, such as extra funding and donations, from the more powerful countries. A matter that appeared the most controversial was the issue of refugee health: female refugee health in particular. Delegates from countries such as France, Nauru, and the USA strongly and openly stated that proper awareness, funding, and education were the right solutions to the these issues.

Delegates all had reached the same consensus that female refugees needed extra attention, supplies, and clinics. Statistics show that female refugees make up 73% of the total amount. With more and more female refugees going through hard times, all the while lacking essentials such as menstrual pads and maternal tools, the delegate of France offered up a solution for the problem. France stated that after the influx of refugees increased in the country, France actively started setting up maternity centers and clinics, OBGYN services, and offering child care. However, despite the proposed models being of great effect in France, lesser developed countries started to raise questions about what they could do, with such little funding and necessities available. To this, the delegates of USA, Switzerland, and Belgium offered to generously help fund the refugee care expenses in the lesser developed nations. Following through, nations such as Colombia, Brazil, and Nauru addressed the problem of sexual assault, breastfeeding, and cultural changes, to which, again, the more affluent nations such as the US and Switzerland offered solutions like family locating skills, more generous donations, and basic self protection classes.

Al-Quds Al-Arabi would like to point out that education, although having success in a number of instances, has, in general, been extremely inadequate in solving a variety of problems effectively. In the instance of Mauritania in 1977, it was a situation similar to the current refugee crisis. In order to solve the predicament, many nations all around the world attemped to use education to solve the issue. Regardless to say, after the resolution was passed the morale in the refugee camp dropped and costs for daily necessities, like food and water, increased as people started demanding nourishment for the mental work they were doing. With this sharp difference between the reality and the theoretical benefits of refugee education, the nations in the committee had to reconvene and come up with more immediately impactful and practical solutions, which ended up being improving the refugee’s health by treating malnutrition and dehydration, helping and supporting women, and treating mental illnesses.

At the end of the second committee session, two major blocs and four smaller blocs had formed, scattered across the committee room, alight with delegate brainstorming debates. In one major bloc, a UK-led bloc, which appeared well-organized and crisp,  as they first introduced themselves with a name, LINC. The name stands for Locating Initial Points of Concern, International Cooperation, Necessary Infrastructure Development, Combatting Substantive Living Conditions of Refugees. As the questioning process started the delegate of the UK started off with how they were prioritizing women’s health, combating sexual harassment, human rights violations along with the food, water, disease, and ghost refugee issues. Being one of the major blocs with the seemingly best solutions for the problems, they were fighting for their own working papers to pass into a resolution.

In general, across the whole committee, there was widespread agreement that education is the prime solution to all the problems that had thus been talked about. Almost every country, for almost every moderated caucus, for almost all issues presented, had offered educating and raising awareness as the appropriate model. However, we are left to wonder about how to successfully educate refugees that do not have the physical and mental means. Although creating a well-educated community of refugees seems to be the best solution in the eyes of the countries present, we are left to wonder how they would solve the issue of malnutrition and dehydration. Although education is doubtless beneficial, it seems more of a cruel burden to place upon refugees, who have been through traumatizing ordeals and have lost family members, to be forced to go to school while sickly and without having their basic livelihood needs met.