June 18th ~ UN observes Sustainable Gastronomy Day

Author: NYLESA member Stef Stevens


As we are celebrating the day of the sustainable gastronomy on the 18th of June, I wanted to talk about our own source of sustainable gastronomy: the Park Slope Food Coop (PSFC).

Founded in 1973 in Park Slope, Brooklyn in a time that young families slowly moved into this previously drug-gang dominated area. These families found that there were very few stores around and finding fresh and healthy food was a big challenge… they sat together with a number of starting farmers and founded the PSFC. Over the years the PSFC grew to be the largest Co-op of the US and with approximately 17,000 members and sales of more than a million USD per week it has become an institution which serves as a model of a successful community owned alternative to commercial profit-oriented business around the world.

In order to buy at this Co-op one needs to become a member (and owner) by investing 100 USD and working at the Co-op 3 hours every 4 weeks. In return for this you can buy carefully selected products (over 15,000) often freshly delivered daily, locally sourced and organic for excellent prices.

We have been a co-op member for almost 4 years and totally love it. As we feel that in the US making profit is often a stronger motivation than the health of the consumer it is great to have such a selective place available selling only the best products available on the market. You will not find coca cola, bio-industry meat and products coming from unsustainable or unethical trade, with a few exceptions like SodaStream a highly debated product in the co-op (due to its link to the by Israel occupied territories).

The member population is a very interesting mix of people: price conscious individuals, alternative, strict religious groups, very principle people, artists, actors, parents who want to provide their families with the best food etc. etc. including Europeans living in New York as they all love this small island of “socialism” in the middle of one of the most affluent areas of New York City.

We feel privileged to be a member of this community and to have access to these incredible products. My monthly work (shift) at the co-op is fun…. while doing my job I get to talk to many “veteran” members which tell me great stories about the history of the Co-op, New York City and provide me with great recipes to prepare fantastic gastronomic meals.

“From Marginalized Women to Entrepreneurs”: an interesting talk at the UN

The Women’s International Forum in collaboration with the Permanent Mission of the Slovak Republic to the United Nations present a talk entitled “From Marginalized Women to Entrepreneurs: The Story of the Women of Eldoret Slum, Kenya” with Martina Bencová Utešená and Mária Mühl.

All NYLESA members are invited to join the event, on Wednesday, November 15 from 1:15pm to 2:30pm at CR7 - UN Headquarters.


Short bios of the speakers are below:
Martina Bencová Utešená is a journalist, educator and the President of the civic Association Two Colour World, which she founded in 2006. For five years, Bencová has been managing a project in Kenya, whose goal is to help children through their mothers. From illiterate and poor women, she creates entrepreneurs. They now can send their kids to school, provide food and even pay for health insurance. As a professor of health care and social work at the University of St. Elizabeth, she gives lectures on global development education and trains Slovak volunteers and doctors to work in developing countries. Bencová also studied acting and film. She has produced three documentary movies concerning humanitarian aid.
Mária Mühl is a photo-journalist with twelve years of experience. She studied documentary photography and has a Master´s degree in Mass Media Communication. Mühl covered the latest news, political, social events, and foreign affairs in one of the most renowned magazine in Slovakia. Her images provide insight into the lives of people from all over the world. Mühl and Bencová have worked together in Kenya. Since 2011 she has been working on her own projects as an independent photographer. The primary focus of her work is the region of Asia, where she lived and studied for two years. Her documentary stories from developing countries are full of children's laughter and pride. Mühl will be opening a photo exhibition in the United Nations Headquarters, on Monday, November 13, 2017.

No fee is requested for NYLESA members. Please bring your ground pass to be identified.

Please confirm your attendance by Sunday, November 12th with an email at  co-chair@nylesa.org


The starting date for registration at the Spring session of the UN Language and Communication Program is coming up. By the end of November or the first days in December NYLESA members will be able to apply for the classes starting in January 2018. The courses, in the six official languages Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish, are provided by LCP at a standard fee.


Volunteers will have to participate in a 1-2 hours training, on November 16th, at the UN LCP in the Secretariat building, and provide support to NYLESA members for the enrollment process through our forum on the the website. (Please, note that the instructions for the enrollment will be in English).

This is a great opportunity to lend a hand in NYLESA and gain experience liasing with the UN system! To confirm your attendance email at reachus@nylesa.org by November 10th.

Cocktail gathering on October 19th at Bierhaus NYC!

Join NYLESA Spouses and UN Staff at the Cocktail Gathering on October 19th. It is an open event, where you can meet new friends and chatter about how it is living and working in New York City.  It is also an opportunity to know interesting venues offering excellent beers and drinks to share in a warm, comfortable alehouse.

The Bierhaus on 712 3rd avenue will host the event next Thursday from 6pm to 8pm.


May Career Table: Preparing for Competency Based Interviews

One more fundamental step in your successful research for a job is the first meeting with your future possible employer. After printing your resume, and getting into the appropriate dress, you have to make up your mind and be prepared to find the best words to introduce yourself, your experiences and your skills. This is the aim of the next Career Table on May 3rd: join us and meet Sophie Brivady, Human Resources Officer in UNICEF, who will offer NYLESA members her huge expertise and her precious advises.


May Career Table will be focused on the competency based interview, a common recruitment tool used in the development sector and told from the perspective of UNICEF. With the help of Ms. Brivady, we will delve into some HR terms and methods that will help you focus on the right things when preparing for your next interview. Our presenter will also address the types of questions to expect and how to answer these questions. Finally, we will dedicate some time to questions and answers.

When: Wednesday, 3 May, 10am to 12pm. 
Where:  At the UN. Exact location will be sent by email to those that register.

Register: Members of NYLESA can register to the event by clicking here. Please note that you need to login to register. Register before April 30th!

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