ACCESSIBILITY AT UNOG A A A A The United Nations in the Heart of Europe

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UNOG Open Day 2012

Saturday 15 September 2012 - 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Palais des Nations and Ariana Park



Some 9,000 visitors flocked to the Palais des Nations under bright blue skies for an Open Day organized by the United Nations Office at Geneva on 15 September 2012 to mark the tenth anniversary of Switzerland’s accession to the United Nations.

Brazilian drums gave a decisively festive beat in the Assembly Hall and children ran in solemn hallways more accustomed to quiet conversations among men in dark suits, while curious visitors learned about solar power and refugee registration in the Ariana Park. When the doors opened at 11 a.m. in the morning, hundreds of families from Geneva or surrounding areas as well as tourists passing through the city were already queuing on the Place des Nations to enter the ground of the United Nations.

The programme focused on democracy (15 September being the International Day of Democracy) and sustainable energy (2012 is the International Year of Sustainable Energy for all). Visitors could participate in dozens of activities, including concerts, dances and other cultural performances organized with the help of member states, film screenings, debates on democracy, exhibitions, quizzes and sports as well as many games for young children.

Over 100 United Nations staff, easily identifiable thanks to their white and blue t-shirts, volunteered their time to make the Day a success, and visitors unanimously praised their helpfulness and courtesy.

Pictures and interviews with enthusiastic visitors are available on the Facebook page created for the event: Open Day Facebook


See below the programme for the day.

Show details for Cultural activities, dance, music, story-telling, films and ceremoniesCultural activities, dance, music, story-telling, films and ceremonies

Show details for 10th anniversary of Switzerland's membership in the UN10th anniversary of Switzerland's membership in the UN

Show details for International Day of DemocracyInternational Day of Democracy

Hide details for Sustainable Energy for AllSustainable Energy for All

2012 is the International Year of Sustainable Energy for All. During the Open Day, you will be able to:

  • Discover a pioneering solar panel developed by the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN), which will soon be installed at Geneva Airport, as well as a fountain powered by solar energy, also developed by CERN.
  • Participate in the inauguration of the solar power supply station for electric vehicles at the United Nations Office at Geneva.
  • See electric cars or with solar photovoltaic roofs, ride an electric bicycle – activities organized by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) and its partners.

Hide details for Stands and demonstrationsStands and demonstrations

Permanent Missions will help you discover their countries and the specific aspects of their cultures.

United Nations funds, programmes and agencies will help you learn about their activities through interactive and fun events.

Thus you will be able to discover life in a refugee camp thanks to the exhibition of tents and emergency equipment, as well as the use of improved stoves; organized by the office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR).

UNITAR (United Nations Institute for Training and Research), with the participation of UNOSAT (UNITAR's Operational Satellite Applications Programme), will demonstrate the use of "Unmanned Aerial Vehicles" (UAVs), which will take and transmit aerial pictures of the Palais des Nations and the Ariana Park.


Show details for Exhibitions and Guided ToursExhibitions and Guided Tours

Hide details for For the younger onesFor the younger ones

Painting, make-up, story-telling, reading corner, TV corner, gymnastics, puppet theatre, quiz, video games, Arabic calligraphy and other fun and educational activities will be offered throughout the day, within the Palais des Nations and in the Ariana Park.

Show details for ... and more ....... and more ....


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Show details for Important Practical InformationImportant Practical Information
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Click here to have a glimpse of the cultural events organized on the previous Open Day at the UN, which took place on 5 June 2010, on the occasion of the World Environment Day.
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For more information, please contact:
United Nations Information Service
Palais des Nations, CH-1211 Geneva 10
Tel.: +41 22 917 2336 - Fax: +41 22 917 0030
e-mail: openday2012@unog.ch

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