The Honourable Janice Filmon, C.M., O.M.
Lieutenant Governor of Manitoba
Friday, May 10, 2019 – 9:00 a.m.
Students and educators, delegates and counsellors, global citizens – welcome to the Rotary Club of Winnipeg’s 62nd annual Model United Nations Assembly.
There’s a very long tradition of people coming together in the centre of the continent – on Treaty One land, in the traditional territory of the Anishinaabe and the Metis people – in order to exchange goods and ideas and negotiate agreements.
So it is fitting that this Model United Nations should have built up such a tradition of drawing young people from North Dakota, Minnesota, Ontario, Saskatchewan and across Manitoba.
In the 62 years of this assembly, young people have discussed so many of the great issues of recent history. The Cold War and the Arms Race, the rising awareness of threats to the environment, movements for equality of rights for women and for all racial, cultural and religious groups – these and more have inspired resolutions debated at this gathering since the 1950s.
As participants in the Model United Nations Assembly, you are not just gaining a greater understanding of the issues you debate this weekend. You are developing your abilities to identify problems, analyze solutions, communicate ideas and work your way to agreement.
In short, you are developing leadership skills that will serve you well in your future education, work and community life.
Some of you may be so bitten by the debate bug that you will want to go on to political life. For you, the thinking and communicating skills you build this weekend will bring obvious benefits.
But in fact all of you will find yourself in situations where the ability to resolve conflict, propose answers and inspire people will come in handy.
There will be no shortage of opportunities for all of you to use the skills you have developed to improve life in your community or your country.
In Manitoba alone, tens of thousands of people volunteer their leadership abilities to support health and education, community clubs and sports organizations, arts and culture groups, advisory and advocacy groups concerned with professions and the environment and more.
These organizations are always in need of new, energetic, dedicated leaders like you.
You’re going to have a memorable and enjoyable time this weekend. I urge you to let this great experience inspire you to a lifetime of leadership in your community, your country and your world.
Thank you. Merci. Meegwich.