Thursday 21 February 2019

One Young World Conference 2014 - Plenty of flags, but #OYW means business

Pictured on main stage of the opening night of One Young World was flag bearers
Pictured on main stage of the opening night of One Young World was flag bearers
Pictured on main stage of the opening night of One Young World was Sir Bob Geldof
Pictured on main stage of the opening night of One Young World was flag bearers
Pictured on main stage of the opening night of One Young World was flag bearers
Pictured on main stage of the opening night of One Young World was Mary Robinson
Brian O'Reilly

Brian O'Reilly

THE One Young World Conference opened tonight in Dublin in an Olympic-esque opening ceremony - even with its own flag procession.

It wasn't quite London 2012, but Dublin proved it could still put on a show on the small stage.

MC Ryan Tubridy kept the crowd giggling - no mean feat considering there were well over 100 countries and languages represented.

"Where is that? I'd love to live there", he joked after a video showed a series of glam shots of Dublin worthy of the X Factor.

Ballymun's Youth Choir got proceedings under way, in what would prove to be one of many musical highlights in the three hour ceremony.

Having made its way from last year's host country of South Africa, there were was relief all round the vuvuzela hadn't made the journey north.

Instead chart topper Ryan Sheridan wowed the crowd in what could prove to be one of the mantras of this year's summit as he sang "it's your world, what you gonna do?"

It wasn't all craic and ceol - Former Irish President Mary Robinson made an impassioned plea for young people to act on climate change.

In a stark warning she told those present time was rapidly running out for us to affect change.

Bob Geldof also warned that humankind could be on the brink of another conflict which could be worse than World War One or World War Two.

The flag ceremony ran, and ran, and ran.

However with a constant stream of colour and native costume rarely proved dull.

North and South Korea's delegates went on together holding hands, to rapturous applause.

Ukraine, Palestine and Syria also got supportive roars from the international crowd.

While delegates mingle over dinner tonight, they will be aware the hard work is ahead of them.

There'll be no late night Guinness in the hotel bar as the conference kicks off at 8am tomorrow.

After the glamour and razzmatazz of the opening ceremony, delegates will be hoping they can really affect change, and fly away from these shores knowing something tangible was achieved.

Online Editors

Editor's Choice

Also in Irish News