Representatives of the GRÓ - International Centre for Capacity Development, Sustainability and Societal Change introduced the work of the Centre at UNESCO in Paris last week. Nína Björk Jónsdóttir, Director General of GRÓ, Irma Erlingsdóttir, Director of the GRÓ Gender Equality Studies & Training Programme, and Sjöfn Vilhelmsdóttir, Director of the GRÓ Land Restoration Training Programme presented their work to Permanent Delegates of partner countries and other selected countries, as well as staff from relevant UNESCO divisions. The aim of the events was to introduce GRÓ's new collaboration with UNESCO.
GRÓ was established 2019 by the Icelandic Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and has been operating under the auspices of UNESCO since 2020. It unites four Icelandic training programmes, focusing on fisheries, gender equality, geothermal exploration and land restoration. GRÓ’s mission is to strengthen individual, organisational, and institutional capacities in developing countries, as well as in conflict and post-conflict countries to deliver development results in line with the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The programmes offer 5-6 months of training, each in its respective fields, and students work on a research project under the guidance of a supervisor.
The presentations emphasised the importance of these issues in terms of development and sustainability and pointed out the positive effects that the programmes have already made, as almost 1,500 students have completed training at the four programmes.