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Queen Rania meets with ‘Mark a Difference’ volunteers

By JT - Feb 05,2014 - Last updated at Feb 05,2014

AMMAN — As a member of UN Secretary General’s High-level Panel (HLP) formed to advise on the global development agenda beyond 2015, Her Majesty Queen Rania on Wednesday met with the “Mark a Difference” youth volunteers.

The campaign was launched by the UN Resident Coordinator’s Office to promote the “My World” survey in Jordan, according to a statement from Her Majesty’s office.

“My World” is a global survey that allows people across the world to relay to the United Nations, and in particular the secretary general’s HLP, the issues they deem as most important and would like the post- 2015 agenda to address.

Since May 2013, Jordan has collected more than 40,000 votes for the survey making it the first country in the region and the eighth worldwide to collect this number of votes, the statement said. The results of the survey will be announced this year.

During the meeting, Queen Rania asserted the important role young Jordanians played in promoting the survey across the Kingdom, thus contributing in identifying priorities and challenges that will help shape the post- 2015 agenda.

The “Mark A Difference” campaign, which was launched in May 2013 under the leadership of the UN Resident Coordinator’s Office, includes a team of 200 volunteers from different governorates.

Recruited through a call on Facebook, the participants comprise university students and volunteers from various organisations, including Irbid Youth Volunteers, Family Kitchen and X Feer, according to the statement.

The campaign also works with 300 other volunteers recruited from organisations such as the King Abdullah Fund for Development, the Princess Basma Centre for Development, the Jordan River Foundation and the King Hussein Foundation.

In recognition of their efforts and commitment to reaching out to their communities, the “Mark A Difference” volunteers were awarded the My World Outreach prize for the Arab states region by the Millennium Campaign last September.

Since June 2013, the volunteers showed a great sense of ownership and willingness to bring concrete “change” to the country, the statement said.

After speaking with the volunteers, Queen Rania explained how the survey collects feedback from all strata in society.

Her Majesty added that it is crucial to publish the results of the survey so far so that decision makers and stakeholders can benefit from them.

To date, according to the survey, the top development priorities in Jordan are finding job opportunities and education.

The Queen noted that the volunteers’ participation in promoting the survey is a valuable experience, allowing them to get to know, firsthand, the priorities of their country and find ways that can help overcome the challenges of the development agenda.

Volunteers shared their experiences from working in the field with the Queen, noting that the people they encountered showed great interest in participating in the survey and were delighted to voice their opinions and share their thoughts on national development priorities.

During the meeting, also attended by Nora Isayan, communications officer at the UN Resident Coordinator’s Office, and Post-2015 Coordinator Alberto Natta, attendees watched a short video featuring the work done by the volunteers. 

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