CE International and the United Nations

With UN consultative status, CE International provides input on key education proposals, universal charters, and global goals.

CE International has actively engaged with the United Nations as a non-governmental organization (NGO) for over several decades. Since 1977, we have maintained consultative status with the United Nations through the Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC). With UN consultative status, CE International provides input on key education proposals, universal charters, and global goals. We also take part in meetings, events, and summits that shape the agenda for education around the world. In addition to UN consultative statues through ECOSOC, CE International is associated with the UN Department of Global Communications, serves on the NGO Committee for UNICEF, and aligns its work and activities with UNESCO. CE International has United Nations Representatives based in New York, USA, and Geneva, Switzerland—the two main headquarters of the UN system. These representatives provide us with timely information about UN and global initiatives and urgent issues related to child rights, children’s education, learning, health, and overall well-being and development.

Our UN Representatives

Yvette Murphy, Washington, D.C., and New York City

Yvette Murphy is a continuing supporter of CE International’s advocacy work through the United Nations. She is passionate about ensuring equity and social justice through education and has dedicated her academic research and work to addressing issues that affect the most disadvantaged children and youth. Yvette’s experience includes program development, professional development, advocacy, bilingual education, and working in the private sector. Yvette spent the last 10 years as Director of Education Diplomacy and Global Advocacy at CE International. Prior to that, she worked for the George Washington University (GWU) Institute for Education Studies as a Program Administrative Director for a professional development project serving educators in Lahore, Pakistan. She was also a bilingual classroom teacher in the Creighton School District in Phoenix, Arizona. Yvette holds an M.A. in International Education from GWU and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

Elisabeth Shuman, New York City

Elisabeth Shuman serves on the advisory board of the NGO Committee on UNICEF, which works to uphold the rights of children everywhere. She was a member of the DPI NGO Executive Committee and served as Treasurer, chaired the Future Conferences Sub-Committee, and also served on the Outreach Sub-Committee whose main purpose is to network and communicate with CSO organizations in the Global South. She has taught in New York City private schools, provided educational counseling service to child-focused agencies, and managed SOS Children’s Villages International’s Student Program for scholarship students from developing countries. Elisabeth grew up in Austria, where she attended the University of Innsbruck, but has lived in the United States most of her adult life. She currently resides in New York City with her husband, a cellist. As the mother of two children, she holds a deep conviction that each child is precious and deserves our respect and protection.

Cassandre Guibord Cyr, Geneva, Switzerland

Cassandre works closely with UN agencies in Geneva. In particular, she promotes the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) through her work with the International Labour Organization (ILO). Her background is in international relations and the United Nations. Cassandra also specializes in youth, education, and human rights policy—particularly in terms of gender-based rights frameworks. Cassandre is originally from Montreal, Quebec, Canada, and has a master’s degree in political science from the Université du Québec à Montréal.

Justine Heckman, Geneva, Switzerland

Justine Heckmann works for Terre des Hommes Suisse, as monitoring and reporting manager. Terre des Hommes Suisse is an NGO specializing in  child rights with a focus on education, participation, and protection. Prior to this, she worked with UNDP and has also worked for NGOs in Bolivia and Canada before getting settled in Geneva. Justine graduated in 2014 from the French school SciencesPo. She specializes in economic development and international cooperation and orients her work toward the respect of human rights, particularly child rights. Justine  has served as a UN Representative in Geneva for CE International since August 2016 and attends Human Rights Council sessions and meetings organized by the Child Rights Connect network. She is a curious person with a passion to visit new countries, cultures, and people.