Over sixty young people from schools across the world — including Essen in Germany, Whitby in North Yorkshire and Glendale in California — have been attending this week's Junior 8 Summit ("J8 Summit") in St. Petersburg, the official youth event of the Russian G8 Presidency. One student from each G8 country will be selected to meet President Putin and the other G8 leaders this Sunday, 16 July, to tell them what they think the G8 nations should do about global economic, social and environmental issues.
The meeting will be the climax of the J8 Summit, a 12-day forum for 13-16 year old students from each of the G8 countries hosted by the Government of the Russian Federation.
Most of the students were chosen to attend the J8 Summit after entering Morgan Stanley's J8 Competition and producing a written G8-style Communiqué, using their knowledge and understanding of global issues developed through the J8 Global Citizenship Programme.
The J8 Programme was developed and funded by the Morgan Stanley International Foundation, Morgan Stanley's charitable grant-making arm in Europe. Now in its second year, the aim of the year-long Programme is to provide secondary school pupils with the opportunity to explore issues of citizenship, economic development and globalisation. Close to 56,000 young people have taken part in the J8 Programme this year.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of the J8 Summit earlier this week, alongside Ann Veneman, the Executive Director of UNICEF, Justin Simpson, Chairman of the Morgan Stanley International Foundation, said, "As an organisation operating all over the world, with employees from over 120 countries, Morgan Stanley believes that we have a responsibility to act not just in the local communities in which we work, but in the global community as well. J8 enables the leaders of tomorrow to have their voices heard by the leaders of today. The passion for engaging on these challenging topics and the creativity and fresh perspective that our younger citizens bring, was evident in the written competition entries we received from around the world. It is appropriate that, at a time when decisions are being made that will affect their futures, young people are also allowed to make their voices heard on the global stage."
During the J8 Summit, the young people have discussed the key topics of the G8 agenda — education, infectious diseases and energy security — as well as the theme of tolerance and extremism. At the end of the week, they will prepare a joint Communiqué to hand to President Putin and the other G8 leaders at their meeting on Sunday.
"The Junior G8 has been an amazing experience for us all, and we have learnt so many important lessons during our short time here in St Petersburg. We hope that the J8 Summits continue for many years into the future and keep on improving," commented one young delegate.
Note to Editors:
The J8 Summit
The J8 Summit is taking place at the Management Training Centre, Academy of Additional Professional Training in Pushkin, St. Petersburg, from 7-18 July 2006.
Morgan Stanley is a Corporate Partner of the J8 Summit which is being run in partnership with the Russian Ministry of Education and Science, the University of St. Petersburg and UNICEF.
The delegates who will meet with President Putin and the other world leaders will be elected by their peers during the J8 Summit on Saturday, 15 July 2006. One delegate from each country will be selected.
Participating School Teams
Teams from the following schools won the J8 Competition to represent their country at the J8 Summit in St. Petersburg:
- Canada: St Joseph High School, Ottawa
- France: Le Lycée Français Charles de Gaulle, London
- Germany: Gymnasium-Essen-Überruhr, Essen
- Italy: Istituto Studium, Milan
- Japan: Tokyo Metropolitan Kokusai High School, Tokyo
- UK: Caedmon School, Whitby, Yorkshire
- USA: Glendale High School, California
The Russian Government ran its own national television competition in eight major cities in Russia to select young people from the host country to attend the event.
The J8 Global Citizenship Programme and Competition
The J8 Global Citizenship Programme was originally developed in partnership with the Morgan Stanley International Foundation ("MSIF"), Morgan Stanley's charitable grant-making arm in Europe, and the Department for Education and Skills ("DfES"). Following a successful national programme, competition and summit in 2004/5, the programme expanded internationally in 2005/6 with the launch of an interactive, multi-lingual website. Students aged 13-16 from all the G8 countries were invited to form teams of up to 8 people to work together, using various resources available on the website, including specially-written information on the J8 2006 topics, and post their G8-style Communiqué onto the website. Short-listed entries from each country were displayed anonymously for all site visitors to read and all participating students were invited to vote for their favourite Communiqué from their own country. The Ministry of Education in each G8 country was also invited to review and comment on the work. All of this feedback was taken into consideration by the expert panel of judges who chose the winning entries.
Morgan Stanley International Foundation
The Morgan Stanley International Foundation (MSIF) was established in 1995 as a registered charity. The main focus of the Foundation's support is in the area of education, training and employment. MSIF developed the J8 Global Citizenship Programme in 2003 to address and inspire global citizenship through education. Using specially-written online resources, thousands of students across the world have been able to discuss and debate some of the most important issues facing the world today.
Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS) is a global financial services firm and a market leader in securities, investment, and management and credit services. With more than 600 offices in 30 countries, Morgan Stanley connects people, ideas and capital to help clients achieve their financial aspirations.
For further information about the J8 Global Citizenship Programme and Competition, and to read the winning Communiqués and profiles of the winning school teams, visit www.j8summit.com.
For further information about the J8 Summit, visit www.juniorg8.com.