I am a citizen, not of Athens or Greece but of the world. Socrates


Global Media Promotion of the annual UN Special Days by CNN

In 1993 Pida Ripley noted that CNN was not promoting the UN Days and UN special agencies on its global Events Noticeboard.  The U.N. Charter indicates the need of "informing the peoples of the United Nations" - so she contacted CNN directly. She provided a presentation listing UN Special Days, with logos and information on the work of all UN agencies, and a few days later successfully secured a CNN commitment to provide global promotion for the United Nations, its agencies and U.N. Special Days.  This major initiative is an example of her ability to ‘see’ possibilities where others do not. The United Nations only launched its official website in June 1995.

Almost a quarter of a century later this high value personal initiative continues promoting the United Nations and its special agencies globally.

(1) “Dear Ms Ripley, to confirm our phone conversation on 13 October, the United Nations Special Days will run on the CNN International Events Scroll”.

Kate Anderson, CNN House, London W1P 1DF  13.10.1992

(2) “Many thanks for your letter of 17 December about United Nations Special Days and CNN International. We were indeed delighted with your breakthrough!”

J C Machin, UN & Commonwealth Department,
Overseas Development Administration 05.01.1993

(3) “We were very pleased and grateful to learn of your promoting the spreading of the news on United Nations Special Days by your initiative to have them included in the ‘Events Noticeboard’ of CNN International and for all your efforts in the promotion and collaboration with the various United Nations programmes.  

Your efforts in the field of human rights, particularly in furthering the rights of women, are impressive and deserve all the support available. Reiterating our congratulations for your outstanding work in the humanitarian field and wishing you and your organisation every success.”

G. Magazzeni, UN Centre for Human Rights, Geneva. 20.01.1993.

(5) “Dear Pida, I congratulate you on getting the UN special days onto the CNN Events Notice Board.  I would not have thought it possible to do that from London, even if I had been aware of this CNN feature.”

Graeme Warner, Director, UN Information Centre, London.  18.02.1993


Pida Ripley’s personal action to gain global support of CNN was a unique initiative as the United Nations at that time did not even have a website.  When the U.N. launched its official website (www.un.org) in June 1995, most delegations and senior U.N. Secretariat officials abstained from providing either financial or political support. The Head of the Information Department at the time, Samir Sanbar, had to find volunteers from within the Department as delegates refused to offer any budgetary allocations.

Source: UNforum.com

NB: Original documents held.  Pida Ripley Profile document.  (c ) 2018