The Times & The Sunday Times (Malta) full article
About 300 representatives from 120 countries participated in a recent conference of the World Federation of UNESCO Clubs Associations. The UNESCO Clubs movement has developed hand-in-hand with UNESCO since the establishment of the first club in Sendai, Japan, on July 19, 1947.
"According to the results of the survey recently conducted by UNESCO, there are more than 3,600 UNESCO clubs, which are engaged in a range of activities in the fields of its competence in 89 member states. Over 1,400 clubs are to be found in the Asia-Pacific Region, 1,200 in Africa, over 600 in Europe and North American, 250 in Latin America and the Caribbean, and over 70 in the Arab States."
The Director General of UNESCO, Mr Koichiro Matsuura, addressed the meeting. He is quoted as saying, "The UNESCO Clubs movement must be seen........as one of UNESCO's most important partners in civil society, the UNESCO Clubs are a distinctive, indeed unique, asset within the UN system. This reflects the fact that, at meetings of our governing bodies over the years, member states have reaffirmed their interest in and support for this movement........I see potential roles of UNESCO clubs, complementary to those of governments, non-governmental organisations and other civil society organisations at national, regional and international levels, as crucial in achieving the goals of the decade, and this is just one example."
In 2004, UNESCO's formal associate relations with the world Federation of UNESCO clubs was suspended, on an interim basis, due to a number of reasons. Since that time, an Ad Hoc Committee for the renewal of WFUCA has been working to re-examine WFUCA's rationale and to identify its best way forward. The article states that a possible solution was reached that the World Federation of UNESCO Clubs might again resume to function within the scope of its creation.