UN Youth New Zealand

UN Youth New Zealand
UN Youth NZ logo.jpg
AbbreviationUN Youth NZ
MottoInspiring global citizens
TypeNon-governmental organisation
  • National
Open membership
Jayden van Leeuwen
Main organ
National Council, National Executive
Parent organization
United Nations Association of New Zealand (UNANZ)
AffiliationsWorld Federation of United Nations Associations
60-80 volunteer officeholders, mostly university students

UN Youth New Zealand (formerly the United Nations Youth Association of New Zealand or UNYANZ) creates opportunities for young New Zealanders to engage with pressing global affairs and lead in the spirit of the United Nations. The charity primarily holds Model United Nations events for high-school and tertiary students, as well as outreach programmes and workshops.

UN Youth serves as the youth arm of the United Nations Association of New Zealand (UNANZ) and is one of the largest youth organisations in New Zealand. UN Youth is a member of the World Federation of United Nations Associations (WFUNA), which in turn has consultative status to the United Nations Economic and Social Council.

UN Youth is a non-profit community organisation run entirely by young volunteers, aged 25 and under or full-time tertiary students.


UN Youth runs approximately 30 regional and national events for secondary school and university students throughout the calendar year.

The key events are the Model United Nations (Model UN). A Model UN conference involves each participant taking on the stance of a particular country and debating a number of resolutions from that stance, all within formal rules of procedure similar to the United Nations General Assembly. Model UN conferences take place in each region, with a national conference – NZ Model UN – taking place each July in New Zealand's capital, Wellington. NZ Model UN involves approximately 250 secondary school students.[1]

UN Youth also facilitates and assembles delegations of New Zealand students to attend international conferences which focus on the United Nations and international affairs. UN Youth sends delegations to:


UN Youth New Zealand is registered New Zealand charity overseen by a National Council and National Executive.

National Council[]

National Council is the highest policy-making representative body, composed of the organisations' National and Regional office holders. National Council typically meets 4 times a year around the country to discuss how the organisation is running and to give policy direction to those who are administering UN Youth nationally (the National Executive), regionally (Regional Councils) and those running events or facilitating delegations.

National Council consists of seven voting blocs represented by the National Executive (President and Executive Officers), each of the four Regional Presidents, National Event Coordinators, and International Event Directors. Almost every other volunteer in the organisation is aligned to one of the seven blocs and contribute to the discussion and decision-making in this way.

National Executive[]

The National Executive is the committee charged with managing UN Youth at a national level, as directed by the National Council. The National Executive is accountable under the National Council, and is elected at the organisation's Annual General Meeting, held at the end of every year.

Whereas the National Council meets quarterly to hold the National Executive, regional branches and various UN Youth programmes to account and to set the organisation's broader policies and direction, the National Executive is charged with implementing that policy and direction on a day-to-day basis.[2] The current National President is Jayden van Leeuwen.

Regional Councils[]

UN Youth has four regions. From north to south these are: Auckland,[3] Wellington,[4] Canterbury[5] and Otago.[6][7] The regions are charged with carrying out the purpose of UN Youth through operating regional level events. The regions are also held accountable by the UN Youth National Council, and the members are elected by an AGM held annually in the region. Each region is headed by a Regional President.

Annual events[]

Additionally, regional councils run their own locally organised and attended events throughout New Zealand. Many are run on an annual basis often with additional conferences being organised throughout the year.

See also[]


External links[]