Appleton West/Renaissance student named official delegate to the United Nations
Posted on 02/26/2016
A Fox Valley student has been chosen as an official delegate to the United Nations. Gillian Payne is a senior at Appleton West and Renaissance School for the Arts and has been selected to serve on the Episcopal Church delegation to the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women (UNCSW).

It will be holding its 60th session from March 14th-– 24th, 2016 in New York City. UNCSW is an annual gathering of United Nations member states to consider global issues related to women’s empowerment and gender justice. Payne’s status as an official delegate allows her access to the floor of UNCSW.
 
A member of All Saints, Appleton, Payne has been involved in Episcopal Church activities at the local, regional and national level. She has volunteered at Harbor House in Appleton serving the needs of survivors of domestic violence.

She is a co-founder of West’s Gender Equality Club whose mission is to provide a safe and active place for students to create change in the community through conversation and action related to equality. She has been a speaker at the annual breakfast of Fox Valley Voices of Men, a group dedicated to ending sexual and domestic violence against women and girls through education, role modeling and mentoring of boys and men.

Greg Hartjes, Principal of both Appleton West High School and Renaissance School for the Arts says that "While a student at West and Renaissance, Gillian has continually demonstrated a commitment to fairness and social justice. I cannot think of another student that would be more deserving of this honor."
 
The UNCSW will consider women’s empowerment and the link to sustainable development, as well as violence against women and girls. Both women and men from around the world come to New York to participate, attending workshops and UN meetings, networking, learning and advocating in order to learn from and influence the process and conversation.
 
“This trip means so much to me as I am an advocate for the education and equality of women in the world,” Gillian shared in a recent interview. “I am honored to have been chosen to represent the Episcopal Church on such a large scale.” Payne plans to attend college starting this fall as a Political Science major.
 
Each delegate is responsible for the full amount of participation including travel, lodging, and registration fees estimated at nearly $6,000. With support of family and friends, she has raised over $4,000. Donate to Gillian.
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