Major Groups Facilitating Committee (MGFC)

The Major Groups Facilitating Committee (MGFC) facilitates Major Groups and Stakeholders engagement with UNEP. It is not a decision-making body, but provides guidance and coordinates the engagement of Major Groups with UNEP. It consists of 2 elected members per Major Group and 2 elected Regional Facilitators per region.

Members of the MGFC are expected to adhere to the obligations outlined in UNEP’s Stakeholder Engagement Handbook and to be able to allocate sufficient time to their functions in the MGFC. It is expected that their interventions and actions are based on regular and intensive interaction with their constituency (their respective Major Group). UNEP is not able to provide any financial or other remuneration. Furthermore, MGFC members are expected to:

  • Help maximize participation of representatives of its Major Group worldwide in UNEA and its related meetings;
  • Promote good representation of Major Groups at the Regional Consultative Meeting (RCM, see below), and ensure that the participants have received the necessary information relating to the agenda beforehand;
  • Facilitate the involvement of Major Groups members with specific issue knowledge in UNEP-related work, both in the local, national and regional contexts as well as at UNEA;
  • Foster balanced representation on the basis of gender, focus, and region;
  • Mobilize knowledgeable representatives of the Major Groups to participate in UNEA and its subsidiary organs;
  • Assist participating Major Group members in having access to information related to the agenda for the UNEP meetings; participating fully in UNEA and its related meetings, and having free and unfettered access to delegates;
  • Provide general information, training and capacity building on UNEP processes;
  • Generate broad media-interest, as well as on-going educational programmes around the world;
  • Maintain a web-based information hub, issues-based listservs, as well as general informational sites;
  • Disseminate issue-based information from the Major Groups and Stakeholders focusing on these issues, to others not directly involved in those issue-networks; and
  • Coordinate the preparation of the Major Groups policy papers.
  • The MGFC shall also be responsible for coordinating their activities with the regional level in cooperation with their regional networks, Regional Facilitators and with UNEP’s Secretariat and Regional Offices.
  • In particular, each of the Major Groups’ facilitators is encouraged to support the UNEP Secretariat to:
    • Foster the participation of their Major Group organizations during the RCMs;
    • In regions where their Major Groups are underrepresented, help to identify and involve emerging or newly-established Major Groups in the regional meetings;
    • Promote inter-regional exchange and coordination of inputs within their Major Group;
    • Facilitate the integration of regional concerns into the Major Groups policy statements; and
    • Actively participate in the identification of skilled or specialized presenters or facilitators at meetings as appropriate.

The Chairs of the MGFC organize, with the support of the UNEP’s Major Groups and Stakeholders Branch/Secretary of the Governing Bodies, regular teleconferences that bring together members of the MGFC, Regional Facilitators as observers, UNEP’s MGSB and others as deemed necessary. These teleconferences take place at least once every six weeks. The draft agenda and meeting minutes are page 28 prepared by the Chairpersons of the MGFC. Minutes are distributed by the MGSB among accredited MGS.

During UNEA, the MGFC also organizes a daily morning briefing/debriefing and process meeting, chaired by MGFC members on a rotational basis, to:

  • Provide an overview of the official agenda for that day;
  • Appoint volunteers to follow critical issues on the agenda who then report back the next day;
  • Promote consensus on Major Group representation during the plenaries and other relevant
  • sessions;
  • Report back to the morning meeting from the discussions held the preceding day, including sharing central and important observations and comments gathered from the UNEA discussions and possibly facilitate consensus-building processes to plan for the day ahead in a strategic manner, including outreach to relevant delegations or other partners;
  • Promote discussions on important messages or concerns raised from any of the Major Groups;
  • Make announcements and address any other relevant business.

Major groups representatives

Business and Industry

Children & Youth

Farmers

Indigenous Peoples and their Communities

Local Authorities

NGOs

Scientific and Technological Community

Women

Workers and Trade Unions

  • Rhoda Boateng - International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) Africa
  • Bert De Wel - International Trade Union Confederation

Find out more about the Major Groups Facilitation Committee’s (MGFC) mandate in its Terms of References.