Model UN as­sem­bly a team ef­fort

Central Leader - - NEWS - By ALAS­TAIR LYNN

Stu­dents will fight tooth and nail for the be­liefs of their adopted coun­tries at the Model United Na­tions As­sem­bly.

Hosts Auck­land Girls’ Gram­mar are pre­pared for the ver­bal on­slaught that is to come.

There are three teams rep­re­sent­ing Ja­pan, France and Pales­tine and the girls have made sure to do their re­search.

‘‘Teams know who they are and they’ve thought about their de­bate,’’ stu­dent Shan­non Cock­er­ton says. ‘‘You know what you’re in for.’’

Head of so­cial sciences Mar­garet Cot­ter has been or­gan­is­ing the event at Auck­land Girls’ Gram­mar for 19 years.

She says most of the or­gan­i­sa­tion is done by the stu­dents.

‘‘It’s a great ex­pe­ri­ence for them run­ning a real event.

‘‘They get some re­ally good knowl­edge that they prob­a­bly wouldn’t learn in the nor­mal school en­vi­ron­ment.’’

MUNA has be­come so popular that many schools will or­gan­ise their ex­ams and sched­ules to fit around the event.

Al­most 100 schools from across the up­per North Is­land will de­scend on the school to com­pete, de­bate and sab­o­tage one an­other.

‘‘On the day you have to be ready to bribe, form al­liances and crush other coun­tries,’’ stu­dent Nayo Sax says.

‘‘It makes you think a dif­fer­ently be­cause you’re lot not your­self – you have to be true to your coun­try.’’

The three teams have been meet­ing weekly to study the view­points, be­liefs and re­cent ac­tiv­i­ties of the coun­tries they rep­re­sent. When they step into the po­lit­i­cal arena from May 22 to 23 all friend­ships are put aside.

‘‘There’s al­ways cer­tain coun­tries that peo­ple love to hate like the United States or North Korea,’’ Shan­non says. ‘‘ So if you are one of those coun­tries you had bet­ter be pre­pared.’’

MUNA is also a great chance to min­gle with other schools.

‘‘Its a weird en­vi­ron­ment,’’ Nayo says. ‘‘ Some peo­ple will go out and try to start an ar­gu­ment or a fight. It’s se­ri­ous but there’s a big so­cial as­pect as well.

‘‘It’s cool just get­ting to know a bit about peo­ple and their school.’’

From left, Lena Linn, Dachela Ed­wards, Ally Orr, Alysha Hoeft, Gabrielle Ker­ridge-Temm, Phoebe An­der­son, Nayo Sax, Shan­non Cock­er­ton, Tam­keen Saeid, Jug­jeet Singh and Osheen Gill.

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