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UN Wants Iowa City Opinions

IOWA CITY, IA (CBS2/FOX28) -- Iowa City will soon be one of 10 cities in America to be part of the United Nations' Post-2015 Consultation, a global program by the UN to get a pulse on priorities people around the world want the organization to pursue.

At the start of the new millennium, the UN had a set of goals it wanted to reach by 2015 -- things like ending world poverty and increasing education. With that deadline approaching, the UN is turning its sights on what to do next.

The UN is headed to cities all over the world, including Iowa City, for the answers.

"We're lucky, in that, we're one of only 10 cities across the country taking part in this historic partnership with the United Nations," said Iowa United Nations Association Executive Director Yashar Vasef.

Vasef says the Iowa UNA has been building a good reputation in the global community for years, so when it came time to apply to be a part of the consultation, it was no surprise the UN would come to a smaller city.

"Luckily, we were selected along with cities like Washington, D.C. and New York and here we are in Iowa City, and we're very proud to be taking a part in this process," Vasef said.

The process looks like this: on Tuesday night, UN representatives will come together with local elected officials, business owners, nonprofit organizations and community members. They'll break into small groups and brainstorm the change they'd like to see.

"Sometimes, we forget that, yes, the UN is involved around the world, especially in developing countries with humanitarian assistance, but these topics, like making sure people don't go hungry, apply to Iowa, as well," Vasef said.

With Iowa's history of being a home for refugees, Iowa City's status as a UNESCO City of Literature, and the politically engaged people in the state, it makes sense for the UN to want to here from folks in the Corridor.

He's hoping the issue that matter to Iowans will make their way to the global community.

The Iowa UNA is still looking for people who want to participate in the consultation. Interested people need to RSVP. Directions can be found on iowauna.org.

The Post-2015 Consultation takes place on Tuesday, with a networking dinner beginning at 5:30 p.m. and the event beginning at 6 p.m. at the Iowa City Public Library.
 
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