8 A.M. EST, Tuesday, December 7
Tackling issues including climate change, health care disparities and holding the powerful accountable, Florida resident and Key Club International President Salma Eldeeb will participate in the inaugural Global Forum for Children and Youth hosted by UNICEF. You can watch Eldeeb share her views during a panel discussion set for Tuesday, December 7.
“This is an eye-opening, diverse group of panelists from different places, of all ages and perspectives,” Eldeeb said. “We have people from all over the world. Viewers can learn from the different perspectives being shared and be inspired to continue an effort they are already undertaking or start a new effort .”
Eldeeb, a senior and member of Spruce Creek High School Key Club in Port Orange, Florida, is Key Club International’s 2021-22 president. The Global Forum for Children and Youth is a new initiative to convene young people with leaders from the United Nations, government agencies, businesses, philanthropy, artists, and influencers to focus the world’s attention on the urgent needs of children and young people. Co-hosts for the UNICEF-organized event include the governments of Botswana and Sweden.
Eldeeb is a participant in the opening session, set for 8 a.m. EST, Tuesday, December 7. It will be shown online and will also feature Ursula von der Leyen, president, European Commission; Mokgweetsi Masisi, president of Botswana; Leena Nair, chief human resources officer, Unilever; Yukari Suzuki, chief brand officer, Clé de Peau Beauté; Dr. Mansur Muhtar, H.E. vice president of Country Programs, Islamic Development Bank; and Daqian Zhang, Global Youth Advisory Board member.
Eldeeb and her panel participants were challenged to take their discussions back to their communities as they seek change and solutions to the problems they reviewed.
“These conversations with those affected the most by the hardships of the world may help you revise your plans to aid them,” she said.
During the panel, Eldeeb said, “I also ask you to hold those in power accountable. Large corporations and governments need to implement changes and take responsibility for their roles in monumental issues. And until they start taking those steps, we need to press them harder and harder.”
Areas that need attention, she said, include climate change, health disparities often brought about by climate change and a need for sustainable development.
“Going virtual because of COVID-19 has shown us that things like broadband internet access should not be taken for granted and need to transition from being privileges to utilities,” Eldeeb said, adding that now is the time to rebuild communities in a sustainable way.
“The pandemic helped us realize we can do so many things differently,” she said. “We should start acting now.”
“Including Salma on this panel shows the importance of Key Club, the largest of our service leadership programs, which I’ve long maintained are the crown jewels of Kiwanis,” said Peter Mancuso, 2021-22 Kiwanis International president. “This also reflects our strong partnership with UNICEF in our shared focus on global health initiatives.”
Eldeeb noted that her Key Club at Spruce Creek High School raised money for the Kiwanis effort to eliminate maternal and neonatal tetanus with UNICEF and the annual Trick-or-Treat for UNICEF.
“We are a service and leadership organization, but many often forget that the latter is such a key part of our experience,” Eldeeb said. “Key Club helps with leadership skills and opportunities, along with service.”