Evatt NT Winning Teams!
Fourteen students from Darwin High School recently competed in the NT Evatt Finals.
Evatt NT is Darwin’s premier debating and diplomacy competition. It operates as a model United Nations Security Council, with students competing in pairs to represent one country, and debating using their public speaking, negotiation, teamwork, research and diplomatic skills to amend the resolution to suit their country’s needs.
The countries represented included the permanent five members of the Security Council, and several temporary members including Myanmar, Turkey and the Philippines. Students worked on two prepared resolutions: ‘The Question of Electronic Surveillance’, and the ‘The Question of Iraqi Sectarian Violence’, and an impromptu resolution: ‘The Question of Extremist Political Parties’.
Congratulations to Emma Stevens and Nisangi Wijesinghe, who represented the Russian Federation for placing first and Lotus Kelly and Lithira Abeysinghe, who represented Myanmar, for placing second. Further congratulations to Senuri Pinto and Jhovel (Aeron) Leyesa who placed fourth representing the Philippines.
Emma, Nisangi, Lotus and Lithira were also selected to represent the Northern Territory at the week-long Evatt National Finals, held in Sydney from 3-10 this December.
Article by Nisangi Wijesinghe, Year 11
The account of the event below is by Emma Stevens:
Nisangi and I represented the Russian Federation at the 2016 Evatt Finals and we placed in the Northern Territory for our teamwork. The day didn’t begin without its challenges the very first being that we hadn’t even chosen to be partners until half an hour before the event started! As both our partners had just called in sick a few minutes before we were meant to begin, Nisangi and I were facing the prospect of being ineligible to try out for a spot as the Northern Territory representatives for the National level of Evatt in December 2016. The prospect of notifying our convenor, Christopher Teng, that we would not be attending was a bitter pill to swallow, but when the time came for that phone call, luckily for both myself and Nisangi.
Christopher organised for us to compete as a team, and with some last-minute preparation, we were ready for the action-packed day ahead. Nisangi and I weren’t strangers to working as a team, having been teammates in Darwin High School’s All-Star debating team (where we won the Northern Territory finals earlier this year), but it is fair to say that it was an adjustment participating in a model United Nations setting. Rather than mercilessly debating a resolution until your team won, Evatt required a great deal of diplomacy and co-operation with your opposition in order to even reach a resolution. As well as this, it was definitely a challenge to have to embody the country you represented, even if it required going against your own moral and ethical code. And while the day did present some challenges, the experiences we gained out of attending ultimately outweighed those.
If I were to highlight one of the best experiences I have gained from attending NT Evatt 2016, it would be all the friendships I have made. Having never attended a model United Nations before, I did not expect to make many friends during the course of the day - and I have never been more pleased to say that I was wrong. Because of Evatt, I have been able to connect with like-minded people from all corners of the Northern Territory, and I can confidently say that these are friends that I will cherish for life. From the beginning of the day until the very end, our facilitators made sure to involve everybody in bonding moments that brought on the biggest of tummy-laughs, the most jaw-cramping grins, and the happiest tears; and it is because of these moments that I strongly and whole-heartedly encourage anybody and everybody into getting involved in activities held by UN Youth NT.
Thank you to all the friends we have made during NT Evatt 2016 and for the support of our partners, Bayden Curnow, Sage Walle, and Eddie Gardiner, who unfortunately couldn’t make it on the day.
I give our biggest congratulations to Lithira Abeysinghe and Lotus Kelly, representing Myanmar, who came second place in the Northern Territory and will be joining Nisangi and myself in Sydney at the National Evatt in December 2016!
Emma Stevens, Year 11