Contributed by Eva, Grade 11
After a rigorous, demanding, and at times intense week, I can assuredly say that it was all worthwhile. This week at THIMUN (The Hague International Model United Nations) has opened up so many doors. I have also expanded new circles of friends and it is a great feeling being surrounded by like-minded people who share an interest in debating current world issues and interested in how our world is shaped. As we are living in challenging times, it was nice to have an insight into world politics and a great opportunity to learn from others.
After debating each day, we had some down-time to relax and update each other about the ups and downs of our day. Although this was only a minor part of our busy schedules each day, it allowed us to open up and gave us all a chance to speak about our THIMUN experience. One of my highlights was actually towards the very beginning of the week, when we went to the beach after dinner and just relaxed before the long week ahead.
The beauty of THIMUN is that there is a combination of the social interaction as well as acquiring debating skills. Everyone is there for the same reason, to contribute with ideas and work together to create successful and promising resolutions. Although we are all fully aware that the hundreds of resolutions, passed and failed, have stayed within the conference, the fact that they were created is much more symbolic and a testament of our passion. I really did try to push myself to raise my placard representing Sierra Leone, and personally engage in stimulating resolutions because the more involved you are, the better the experience. Rather than returning with regrets, I came home feeling as though I contributed in small but significant ways with new dreams for the future.
To face the world’s toughest challenges…
Contributed by Justin, Grade 12
THIMUN 2017 was an amazing experience. The most interesting part was probably the first day. As you join your commission, you find yourself suddenly surrounded by about 150 other students from around the world. You are at once very different from them as you they come from different countries, have had different experiences or are of different ages yet at the same time you feel bonded with them as you are all international students brought together by a love of debating and an interest in world politics. Despite the first moments feeling slightly daunting, you are quickly reassured as you present yourself to another student, learn his name and make a friend. In my personal case I was also happily surprised to see that friend whom I had met at a previous conference was also in my committee and debating the same topic as me, proving yet again what a small world it is that we live in. Meeting so many new people from all over the world shows to you that in every culture there will be youths like you and that you can relate to people from all over the world.
During the first day you create or join a group with other students in order to write a resolution. This is often one of the most fun moments as you meet so many different people and then start working together to try and create the best resolution as possible. When discussing the topic of the Western Sahara I remember one of the students telling us he was actually from Morocco and talking of the importance many people from his country place on that topic. Moments such as these show us that the topics we debate are not just some vague theoretical challenge that we have to solve but are actually real-world problems which affect people’s lives and on which people place have very strong opinions.
Being the group’s ambassador meant that I had more responsibility yet it also meant that I approached the whole event in a slightly different way. The fact that you are representing the school makes you feel proud and gives you that extra urge to be as good as possible. Participating in the opening and closing ceremony was a real honour as you feel that you are playing an important part in this great event. Several times I was awestruck by just how big THIMUN was. At most times you are in your commission of around 150 people so it is only at events such as the opening ceremony that you see a significant proportion of the 3500 students attending this conference.
Although I am slightly sad that this was my last THIMUN, I am also happy to have been able to participate in it a second time and to have met so many interesting people. The debates we had not only showed the vast amount of problems in the world, but also that the fact that with discussion and collaboration with people from many backgrounds, we are capable of finding solutions to even the toughest challenges.