This year, we had the amazing chance to travel to Torùn in Poland a day in advance to meet the organising team of ToMUN 2023. This allowed us to learn about what it takes to organise a conference. It was an utmost fruitful experience, as we probably paid more attention here than in any lessons at school. We gained an insight into housing and catering management, the press and facilitation team’s job, managing the media aspect, providing coffee as well as organising a blast of a party. We are sure that we will use this precious information to organise the best MUN experience for everyone at our school Lycée Michel-Rodange in January 2024!
ToMUN is an international simulation of a UN conference, to which people from all around the world travel. The ToMUN 2023 conference was divided into eight committees with four of them participating also in the General assembly, where the subject was “The issues of mass migration”. The conference lasted 3 days and involved beside the debating and lobbying in the different committees, a visiting tour around the beautiful city of Torùn, a beginners’ workshop, a party and an opening and closing ceremony.
I, Sara, had the honor to be one of the chairs at ToMUN 2023, more precisely, I chaired the committee called United Nations Environment Programme. I had never chaired at a conference before, so pretending I was little nervous, would be a major understatement. Nevertheless, I couldn’t be happier with the outcome of the conference. My delegates, despite being first timers, were amazing, engaged and quite knowledgeable. Seeing the conference from another perspective was a chance to gather precious experience in the perspective of our own conference next January.
I, Tom, having attended ToMUN 2023 as a delegate, was quite nervous at the beginning due to the fact that it only was my second MUN I was attending. However, ToMUN ended up creating an environment where I felt comfortable expressing the objectives as well as raising points and motions in order to move along with the debate as a delegate of Hungary, the country I was representing in the World Health Organization during the conference. I feel that ToMUN has given me a significant push forward in my confidence as well as for my speaking skills in front of a crowd and it also improved my capability to seek compromise.
I, Mira, had the privilege to be part of ToMUN 2023 as the delegate of Germany. As this was my second MUN, I was a bit nervous at first but confident at the same time, as I was able to use the experience from my first MUN in my work. On the first day, however, my patience was put to a test, due to the fact that the majority of the delegates participating in the United Nations Environment Program turned out to be beginners and therefore hadn’t really felt comfortable with the rules of procedures yet. But Sara, our chair, calmly guided them through the debate and so, slowly but steadily, everyone began to participate in the debate. As a co-submitter of our first resolution, I was amazed by the fact that the debate held on until the next day, due to so many beginners speaking up and proposing creative ideas. Because of the very heated first debate, I became motivated to prepare a resolution for the second debate that had taken place right after lunch on the second day.
As I was the main submitter this time, I got showered with questions and clause proposals by other delegates and got excited to take responsibility in guiding the beginners through the entire process of pushing our resolution through, which we eventually succeeded in doing. On the third day, I was saddened by the fact that the debate was coming to an end and that the moment, where we were going to say goodbye to each other, was coming closer. Shedding a tear or two during the closing ceremony, I got selected as the best delegate of my committee. I was overcome with pride and joy, as the effort I had put in these three days of debating and arguing, had been recognized.
I, Victor, really enjoyed ToMUN not only as delegate of Canada but also on a personal basis. It always gives me a “wow” feeling when I look back at the wonderful, wonderful experience that I’ve been blessed with. On the first day at the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime committee, I was looking forward to the debate with confidence, because I had prepared myself better than for my last MUN. However, I quickly noticed that my preparations had weak points.
Luckily, I had the time to patch up my preparation for the second day, and thus I actively and comfortably represented Canada, offered solutions and helped writing the later resolution. On the third day, at the General Assembly, I had the chance to work with my kind co-delegate, who was experienced in writing resolutions. And so, the delegation of Canada nurtured relations with more and more nations, and even submitted the main resolution, which passed in the GA. Even though I didn’t speak up as much as I wanted, I see this conference as a complete success. I admit that Canada could’ve been represented in a better way, but I learned from my mistakes and look forward to my next MUN, as a better delegate and as a better person.
Additionally, I believe it is important not to see ToMUN solely as a conference, but as an event where you get to meet people from across continents, where you make lasting relations and friendships, where you discover yourself and where you can safely be yourself. I am thankful from the bottom of my heart for the organisers, delegates, schools, host families, MUN-directors and everyone who made this experience possible, for it was truly rewarding and enlightening.
For me, Tara, ToMUN was my first conference which made me sufficiently nervous about the whole process. I wasn’t sure what to expect and didn’t know if I was prepared enough. After the first days of the conference, I realized that these doubts and hesitations were without reason. ToMUN is a very beginner friendly MUN, that offers a beginners’ workshop before the start of the conference, where every procedure is further explained, and which helped me to lose a bit of my nervousness about the committees. Furthermore, the chairs in the different committees were very open for any questions and offered a lot of help.
My Committee, the UNW, was quite interesting as the subject of domestic violence and surrogacy can be quite diverse and controversial. While the first day was a bit slow, as most of us were first-timers and so were quite reserved, the second day was a lot of fun and we were able to debate seriously and in an intense way over the topics.
In general, ToMUN is a great conference, as you meet a lot of different people of different nationalities, and you can get a small perspective on how they live and how their culture is. In addition, you can immerse yourself into Polish culture and visit the beautiful city of Torùn, with its red-brick houses and cobblestone and heel-breaking streets. Adding to that, in the city you can find cute coffee shops, candy shops and the traditional gingerbread shops on every corner.
Visit at the Luxembourgish Embassy in Warsaw
After the exciting conference in Torùn, we also had the honor to be invited to a breakfast held by the Ambassador at the Luxembourgish Embassy in Warsaw. We were given an insight into the world of diplomacy and the effort it takes to become a great diplomat. The ambassador and consul shared a lot of their knowledge about diplomacy with us and told us how exactly they were assigned at the Luxembourgish Embassy in Warsaw.
We also talked with them about a multitude of current political issues where they shared their perspectives as experienced diplomats with us on topics such as the war in Ukraine and the many different political situations resulting from it. We left the Embassy with our eyes opened on international politics and full stomachs. 😊
Sara Vaccino, Mira Zwank, Tara Mac Neill, Victor Fola, Tom Dieschbourg (LMRL MEGA-Club)