IYLA USA 2014: August 18th

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Group photo with bright faces

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Tomorrow we look forward to our finale event at the United Nations! See you then!

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Julia A. Maciel Gonzalez of the Permanent Mission of Paraguay to the UN, thanks Ambassador Palitha for his work to encourage youth leadership

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John Dickson, chairman of Global Young Leaders Academy (GYLA), recognizes the peace-building work of the Sri Lankan Mission to the UN

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Our young leaders greatly appreciated this warm reception by a nation of people we may have hardly known of before.

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Sri Lankan officials have held leading positions in anti-terrorism efforts and in the United Nations departments

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Ambassador Palitha Kohona personally delivered a presentation on Sri Lanka ranging from the tourism promotion effort to the increase in the 'happiness rating' of its citizens over the past few years.

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Ambassador Palitha Kohona and Leonard Faustino of the Philippines discuss with a similar background of living in an island nation

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Ambassador Palitha Kohona greets our delegates and shares about his island nation of the tip of India

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The Sri Lanka Mission to the UN invited us for a special reception, where we were personally greeted by Ambassador Palitha Kohona

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Decorations outside a UN mission

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IYLA delegates with staff of the Norway Mission to the UN

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In the afternoon, participants split into groups to visit various UN Missions, including Norway, Sweden, Iceland, Hungary, Malaysia, and the Netherlands.

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"Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free." -Emma Lazarus (engraved on the Statue of Liberty)

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Our young delegates continued to explore the great city of New York, walking along Wall Street, crossing the Hudson on Stated Island Ferry, and visiting the famous Times Square.

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Several participants shared that the time spent reflecting at this memorial on the challenges facing the world was one of the most meaningful experiences in this program so far.

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An immense loss to families from around the world, the 9/11 attacks are a stark reminder of why change is necessary now, not in a distant future.

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Quiet and reflective, our young leaders from around the world traced victims’ names engraved in the stone surrounding the monument.

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Participants visited the memorial site of the 2001 attack on New York City’s World Trade Center.

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Colossal buildings welcomed us on this Monday morning as we entered the heart of New York City