SDG5- Thoughts from DPGA Juntae Park

Hi, my name is Juntae Park, and I am one of the Executive members of this year’s THIMUN. I was born in Seoul, South Korea, and moved to Qatar when I was 9. I have lived in the Middle East ever since, having been in Abu Dhabi for two years and in Qatar for the rest. Currently, I am a Grade 11 student in Qatar Academy, enrolled in the IB program. I began my MUN career in Grade 7, when I joined my school’s MUN club and learned about the activity. However, my interest in MUN really took off the following year, in which I participated in THIMUN Singapore. It was like an adventure- travelling to an entirely new country with my friends and experiencing so many different cultures and perspectives. Following that, I actively participated in numerous annual conferences such as THIMUN Qatar, DCMUN, PHESMUN, and DESMUN, and now, in my 4th year of MUN, I have the honour of being the Deputy President of the General Assembly in THIMUN 2018.

The Sustainable Development Goal 5 is Gender Equality; it concerns topics such as: the end of all forms of discrimination against women and girls, the elimination of early and forced marriages & gender, and equal opportunities for leadership positions for women in all levels of decision making. This SDG is extremely important, as historically women had far less rights than men: not being able to vote, having less quality education, and socially expected to a life of childcare are only a few examples of their constraints. This SDG is one that everyone should work towards promoting, no matter their economical, political, or social status; fair work and a school environment are things that are steadily becoming more accessible for most people in the world, and each small step taken to help others attain them contributes towards the making of a better world.

Personally, I believe that gender equality is important because of the simple fact that it is a fundamental human right. Discrimination on the basis of gender is akin to racial or religious prejudice, and the fact that it remains such a huge issue in the modern day world, even in developed nations, is an embarrassment. We must all strive for a fair and equal world. Additionally, the empowerment of women and equality between both genders would advance the human race in almost all aspects, allowing societies to harness the full potential and capabilities of its people. Therefore this issue cannot be understated; this is not a womens’only issue– gender inequality is a problem for everyone. And how else to better address this topic than an activity which aims to tackle challenging and global issues?    

I feel that MUN is very effective in promoting this SDG because it is a platform in which nothing restricts the participants: be it race, religion, or gender. Furthermore, everybody who participates in MUN has an equal say and equal voice, and no one opinion is more important than another. The only requirements are that you have dedication, the eagerness to learn, and the willingness to try. MUN empowers women to take initiative, action, and leadership roles. It is only natural that MUN would incorporate the United Nations SDGs, and now in light of these advantages it would be very beneficial to choose SDG 5 specifically.