What the United Nations Does

UN Headquarters
The United Nations meets in the United Nations Headquarters in New York City.

September 21st is the International Day of Peace. This is a day created by the United Nations. Let’s look at the United Nations and what they do.

World War II left much of Europe in ruins. Japan had been devastated by atomic bombing. Nations wanted to work for peace. In 1945, 51 countries founded the United Nations, or U.N. Now there are 193 member nations. They work together to promote peace.

The largest part of the United Nations is the General Assembly. All 193 member nations are part of the General Assembly. It discusses, debates, and makes recommendations on issues related to international peace and security.

The most powerful part of the United Nations is the Security Council. Only ten nations are part of the Security Council. The Security Council can decide to use military action, or punish other nations with sanctions. The United States is one of five permanent members of the Security Council. If one permanent member of the Security Council votes against something, then the Security Council will not do it.

The United Nations also fights poverty, disease, and helps those affected by natural disasters. UNICEF, or the United Nations Children’s Fund, makes sure that children in need get food, water, and medical supplies.

What Can You Do?  What ways can you think of to help promote peace?

Photo Credit: Ingram Publishing