TIQVAMUN VII brings together 300 students from all over Israel, as well as Liberia, to address topics like the Civil War in Ethiopia, Juvenile Justice, Sustainable Tourism, and more.
TIQVAMUN VII, took place on Sunday January 23, with 300 students participating from 30 schools and two dozen cities. For the second year in a row the conference was held virtually, which allowed students from abroad to participate as well. TIQVAMUN, Israel’s second oldest Model UN conference, is also the only national Model UN conference in Israel to include grades 5-12, with even a few intrepid third and fourth graders joining.
This year’s committees and topics included UNEP (Saving the sea turtles), UNESCO (Returning stolen cultural objects), SPECPOL (Tigray conflict in Ethiopia), UNICEF (Juvenile justice), UNAOC (Rise of Hindu extremism in India), UNOOSA (Militarization of space), UNWTO (Sustainable tourism), Model Knesset (Violence in the Arab sector), and Crisis (Council of Olympus: Greek gods).
At the opening ceremony, Ambassador Amir Weissbrod, head of the international organizations unit at the Israeli MFA, welcomed students to the conference. Jessica Tesoriero, Deputy Cultural Attache at the US Embassy, also offered opening remarks, congratulating the students on their participation in the conference. Yoni Eshpar, political affairs officer at the UN Special Coordinator (UNSCO) office, talked about his belief in the empowerment of youth via Model UN. From there it was a full day of trying to resolve the various conflicts and challenges on the table. At the end of the day, the closing ceremony was held with students receiving awards for their participation. In total, over 300 students participated in the conference.
Participating schools and cities included: Rabin Keshet Branco Weiss Mazkeret Batya, Pelech Ruth Z Korman, Darca Ramon, Shaked Darca, Atid Lod High School for Excellence and Scientific Leadership in the Community, Misgav Upper School, Wizo Hadassim, Ironey Yud Dalet, Hand in Hand, Salvatorian Sisters’ School , The Greek Catholic High School, Yahalom Middle School, Shoham HS, Atid Raziel, Ort Hilmi Shafie, Iksal high school, Young Ambassadors school, Ashkelon Gifted and Talented school, Ramon comprehensive school, Ahad Ha'am Jr High diplomacy class, Yeshurun comprehensive school, and elementary schools from Petah Tiqva: Amir, Bialik, Elimelekh Kaner, Hadar, Haim Hefer, Krol, and Shifer.
Ella Fishler from Hadar School told Diplomacy.co.il that "The conference was really fun, it's fun to express your opinions and fight for them and learn about our world where we live, it's fascinating. It's important to argue about what you believe in, and that's exactly what we did.
Shira Zehavi from Shifer school added "I really enjoyed the conference, it was an amazing and special experience where I got to learn a lot about the country I represented (Argentina) and the UNESCO committee. It was a great way to figure out when to compromise and when to take a hardline stance, and to learn to work in teams, plus the Chairs were very nice, which relieved the stress."
Tohar Levin from Haim Hefer school said that she learned many new things at the conference and thanked all of the organizers. Yagel Silko, representing the United States in UNESCO, said that he really enjoyed the conference, and recommended fellow students to join the Young Ambassadors program and the MUN club.
Omu Sow, one of the international participants from Muslim Congress high school and the IOMUN Liberia team, said "Thanks so very much, tt was a pleasure participating in this educational program."
Maayan Eina from Krol school noted that despite all of the challenges of Corona, and participating in MUN via Zoom, the conference had been a non-stop fun learning experience. She added that she learned new information about the civil war in Ethiopia, and commended fellow students for the respectful debates and discourse during the conference. Her classmate Lishay Nadawo (representing Ethiopia in SPECPOL) added her thanks for the efforts the chairs and organizers put in to ensure a fun learning experience for the students.
Olga Dudchuk, from Atid Raziel school was a delegate in UNOOSA. She said "It was great experience to participate in online MUN, it’s always hard to get feedback via computer but here I saw that people are interested so much in this that even an online format allowed to organize a fantastic conference. It was nice to work with the chairs and get help from them, I really loved the organization."
Ruth Shemesh from Ahad Ha'am Junior high school said she "learned a lot about the procedure of UN. It was very interesting to practice and to be exposed to different solutions for India's problem. The chairs were really nice and they explained about the mods and unmods. My favorite part was when we had our debates in different rooms. It was really fun." Her classmate Noya Shchori added that MUN was "a very interesting and special experience for me."
Yair Levi, MUN coordinator at Darca Ramon school said "Thank you so much for organizing the Tiqvamun and giving the kids a chance to participate. They had a great time."
Noam Nawi, from Krol school said that he gained a lot of knowledge from participating in the conference, and commended the chairs for ensuring respect for all the students, and facilitating the committees expertly.
Shir Bachar (Romania in SPECPOL) from Hadar school enjoyed the MUN format, which allows everyone to have a voice. Zohar Glanz, from Hadar school represented Italy in SPECPOL. She said "It was very exciting especially because this is my first conference and I learned a lot for the next conference."
Elinor Almagor from Shifer school represented Egypt in UNESCO. She said the conference was "a lot of fun, while teaching us how to express ourselves, and stand up for our opinions. It's an experience I will never forget, I will always remember my first conference."
Shai Milstein, from WIZO Hadassim provided an enthusiastic summary:
TIQVAMUN was a perfect example of what an online MUN experience can be all about: creative, admirable, intriguing, fun, and a room for unique people to share a marvelous time. In 2022's TIQVAMUN conference, we got the opportunity to gather ideas and beliefs from several students from all over the country and combine them in creative ways to come up with solutions for both real-life and imaginary topics (such as the Crisis Committee, which I was in).
The amount I learned within the hours I spent on my committee is uncountable, and I'm sure the people I met will be great friends of mine in the future. I had a great time, and I'll be looking forward to the next conference hosted by the TIQVAMUN team.