Share

Senator Mitchell pays tribute to 'courage and commitment' of civil society

Senator George Mitchell
News

Senator Mitchell pays tribute to 'courage and commitment' of civil society

Governance | Andrew Hind CB | 21 Jun 2012

International peace envoy and former US Senate majority leader, George Mitchell held an audience of sector leaders spellbound last night, when delivering NCVO’s annual Hinton Lecture.

Senator Mitchell recalled his role as a main architect of the 1998 Good Friday Agreement in Northern Ireland, saying his memory of meeting seriously-injured survivors of the Omagh bombing would be seared on his memory for the rest of his life. “They didn’t want to speak about themselves; they just urged me to keep going with my peace efforts,” he said.

“The voluntary sector was founded by, and functions on, the passion and determination of selfless individuals like that; men and women of courage and commitment who make our lives better through what they do. That was Nicholas Hinton.”

In a tour-de-force of a speech, Senator Mitchell outlined the three main threats he sees to democracy around the world. The post-World War II alliance between the UK and US had led to many great achievements, notably the establishment of the UN, Nato and the EU. The current economic problems in Europe must not be allowed to undermine those achievements, he said.

“The development of free nations must be reinvigorated; the same leadership we had back then is still needed now.”

Senator Mitchell identified nuclear proliferation and the use by some countries of military and economic power, without it being based on underlying democratic principles, as major threats to the world order we have known for almost 70 years.

“For too many people, military power is seen as replacing these democratic principles, rather than serving them.”

Last night’s 15th annual Hinton lecture was organised by NCVO in memory of Nicholas Hinton, the highly-respected former chief executive of NCVO and Save the Children, who died while on a peace-keeping mission to Croatia in 1997. Hinton was also the founder of the International Crisis Group, where Senator Mitchell was chairman.

Comments

[Cancel] | Reply to:

Close »

Community Standards

The civilsociety.co.uk community and comments board is intended as a platform for informed and civilised debate.

We hope to encourage a broad range of views, however, there are standards that we expect commentators to uphold. We reserve the right to delete or amend any comments that do not adhere to these standards.

We welcome:

  • Robust but respectful debate
  • Strongly held opinions
  • Intelligent relevant discussion
  • The sharing of relevant experiences
  • New participants

We will not publish:

  • Rude, threatening, offensive, obscene or abusive language, or links to such material
  • Links to commercial organisations or spam postings. The comments board is not an advertising platform
  • The posting of contact details for yourself or others
  • Comments intended for malicious purpose or mindless abuse
  • Comments purporting to be from another person or organisation under false pretences
  • Gratuitous criticism, commentary or self-promotion
  • Any material which breaches copyright or privacy laws, or could be considered libellous
  • The use of the comments board for the pursuit or extension of personal disputes

Be aware:

  • Views expressed on the comments board are left at users’ discretion and are in no way views held or supported by Civil Society Media
  • Comments left by others may not be accurate, do not rely on them as fact
  • You may be misunderstood - sarcasm and humour can easily be taken out of context, try to be clear

Please:

  • Enjoy the opportunity to express your opinion and respect the right of others to express theirs
  • Confine your remarks to issues rather than personalities

Together we can keep our community a polite, respectful and intelligent platform for discussion.

Free eNews

Charity shop growth at the lowest level for years

2 Oct 2014

The charity shops sector is still growing, but more slowly than before, according to the Charity Shops...

Tearfund chief executive steps down

2 Oct 2014

Tearfund chief executive Matthew Frost has announced he will step down from his role after almost a decade...

New buying group formed to support growth of social care charities

1 Oct 2014

A new membership group was launched today to support the growth of health and social care charities and...

Charity shop growth at the lowest level for years

2 Oct 2014

The charity shops sector is still growing, but more slowly than before, according to the Charity Shops...

Half of charities do not claim gift aid, 2014 SONI report suggests

2 Oct 2014

The proportion of UK charities reporting no income from gift aid increased eight percentage points to...

IoF calls for annual income cap on society lotteries to be raised from £10m to £100m

1 Oct 2014

The Institute of Fundraising is calling for the annual income cap on society lotteries to be increased...

Half of charities do not claim gift aid, 2014 SONI report suggests

2 Oct 2014

The proportion of UK charities reporting no income from gift aid increased eight percentage points to...

New organisation to arrange free data security support for charities

1 Oct 2014

A new scheme matching up IT professionals from the private sector to provide free advice on security and...

JustGiving page for Manchester Dogs’ Home receives four donations a second

15 Sep 2014

JustGiving has said that donations going to an appeal for the Manchester Dogs’ Home following an arson...

Join the discussion

Twitter
 
Training

Attending our one day courses is a highly effective way of ensuring new and existing trustees fully understand their role, responsibilities and liabilities.

>> Find out more <<