The Bahá'í International Community and the United Nations

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The Bahá'í International Community Statement Library

More than a century ago, Bahá'u'lláh called for the creation of a system of international governance, based on the principle of collective security, which would encompass all of the nations of the world and lay the foundations for a lasting and universal peace. In seeking to promote this concept, as well as to engender justice, peace and prosperity at the international level, the worldwide Bahá'í community has, as a duly accredited non-governmental organization, long worked closely with the United Nations, supporting many of its goals and programs. Bahá'í representatives were present in 1945 in San Francisco at the founding of the United Nations. In 1947, the Bahá'í communities of the United States and Canada were recognized by the UN Department of Public Information (DPI). The next year, in 1948, the Bahá'í International Community itself was recognized by the UN DPI as an international non-governmental organization.

The worldwide Bahá'í community has long worked closely with the United Nations, supporting many of its goals and programs.
The worldwide Bahá'í community has long worked closely with the United Nations, supporting many of its goals and programs. Shown above are Bahá'í representatives Ugo Giachery and Mildred Mottahedeh (third row from back, looking at the camera) at an early UN conference in Geneva, in May 1948.

In May 1970, the Bahá'í International Community was granted consultative status with the UN Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC), allowing for a greater degree of interaction with the Council and its subsidiary bodies in efforts to promote social and economic development worldwide. In March 1976, the Bahá'í International Community was granted consultative status with the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF), similarly extending opportunities for interaction with the United Nations to promote the health, education and well-being of children.

Relationships with these and other UN bodies and agencies have deepened over the years. Today, for example, the Community enjoys a working relationship with the World Health Organization (WHO), it has an association with the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), and it has undertaken joint activities with the United Nations Development Fund for Women (UNIFEM) and the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF).

As an international non-governmental organization, the Bahá'í International Community is involved in a wide range of activities, including peace-building , human rights, women's affairs , education, health, and sustainable development.

These concerns are addressed not only at the United Nations, but through collaboration with other international non-governmental organizations. The Bahá'í International Community, for example, is a member of the Advocates for African Food Security: Lessening the Burden on Women; of World Wide Fund for Nature's Network on Conservation and Religion; of the Center for Our Common Future in Geneva; and of the Education for All Network.

General Information
The Bahá’í Faith
The international website of the Bahá’ís of the world.
The Life of Bahá’u’lláh
A photographic narrative about the life of the founder of the Bahá’í Faith.
Bahá’u’lláh
Writings of Bahá’u’lláh and a history of His life, His teachings, His station.
The Universal House of Justice
General information about the Universal House of Justice, selected statements and letters which have been written by it or prepared under its supervision.
Attaining the Dynamics of Growth
A global sampling of Bahá’í community life – devotional meetings, children and youth classes, study of sacred scripture, service projects, and fellowship.
Reference
Bahá'í Reference Library
The Bahá'í sacred writings available online.
Bahá'í Statement Library
Statements issued by the United Nations office of the Bahá'í International Community.
Bahá'í Media Bank
Photographs available for downloading.
News
Bahá'í World News Service
News from around the globe.
One Country
The quarterly newsletter of the Bahá'í International Community, with in-depth features, book reviews and commentary.