Posted on 1/5/2014

Outer Banks Model UN Goes to Washington

We keep talking about how great the Dare County Schools are and itâåÛåªs probably a touch of localâåÛåªs pride that goes into it, but the fact is these are schools that really challenge kids and give them a chance to experience things too few school districts do.

The latest was a trip to Washington, DC with the First Flight High School Model UN.

Model UN is a high school club where kids role play being delegate nations to the UN. In February, the kids will be going to Hampton Roads for a day long conference where each member nation is expected to put forward resolutions and programs consistent with their nationâåÛåªs goal.

The two countries FFHS will be representing are the United Arab Emiraites and Togo--a small nation in western Africa.

On Friday, the kids were guests of the nations at their Washington, DC embassies.

An absolutely remarkable and memorable trip. Received graciously in both embassies, the settings were a stark reminder of the difference between the have and have not nations, the UAE embassy a palatial modern edifice with a four story atrium topped by a stunning mosaic. The Togo embassy was a brownstone building on embassy row.

Yet the courtesy and deference shown to the students in both embassies was consistent and gratifying. That didnâåÛåªt stop Matthew from asking at the UAE what their position on targeted drone strikes was--they just purchased $1.4b of military hardware from the U.S. including drones for border security, as it turns out. And a surprisingly similar answer from the representative at the Togo embassy--a relatively poor, non-aligned nation. âåÛåÏWe will do what is necessary to protect our citizens,âåÛå he said.

To see kids this aware, this involved and enjoying the process of learning was a great reminder that no matter how much we worry about this, that and the other thing, and wonder what the future will bring, there is this tremendous reservoir of hope and energy waiting to be unleashed.

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