At the Norwegian Red Cross’ Landsmøtet (annual general assembly) in October 2017, Sven Mollekleiv, former Secretary General (1991-2001) and outgoing President of the Norwegian Red Cross (2008-2017), was appointed as Honorary President of the Norwegian Red Cross for the period 2017-2020. Sven Mollekleiv has dedicated his professional and voluntary career to social responsibility, humanitarian engagement and the potential of volunteering – and he has been a strong and committed supporter of UWC Red Cross Nordic since it was founded. On accepting the position of Honorary President on Friday 6th October, Sven said ‘trust is the most important ingredient we have in the Red Cross’.

Sven was part of the team responsible for the founding of a Nordic College in the fjords as part of the United World College movement and has had a long association with UWC RCN. He is a regular visitor to our College and provides constant encouragement to develop the partnership between the College and the Red Cross. He has been a strong advocate for our Survivors of Conflict programme since it was first introduced and the selection of students with disabilities from conflict and post conflict countries.

Sven Mollekeiv, President of the Norwegian Red Cross, delivering his keynote address

Sven Mollekleiv, President of the Norwegian Red Cross, delivering his keynote address

At the invitation of UWC International, Sven delivered an outstanding keynote speech to launch the UWC Congress in October 2017 under the title of Why the World Needs UWC. He received a standing ovation from over 500 delegates. We could not have hoped for a more relevant and thoughtful start to the event which fully underlined the value of the shared mission UWC has with the Red Cross.

Sven recently shared a Facebook post of the Huffington Post article on the deliberate diversity at the heart of UWC RCN with the comment: ‘Huff Post has discovered our gem by the fjords! ? Immensely proud of this partnership and the magnificent youth I get to meet during visits. They continue to impress me. Worth the read. Youth will lead us into the future!’

Sven currently holds many posts on committees, ranging from Amnesty International Norway to the ICRC’s Moveability (formerly Special Fund for the Disabled and one of the partners in RCN’s Survivors of Conflict Programme).

He has been put forward as a candidate for the Presidency of the International Federation of the Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies – with the final round of election to take place in November. When asked what his vision for his presidency is, Sven responded: ‘to meet the challenges of our world, we have no choice; we have to improve and come together as one’. For more information, please click here.

On behalf of UWC RCN, we wish him and his team at our partner organization, the Norwegian Red Cross, the best of luck for his candidacy as the process enters the final weeks.

For profiles and news of other students, alumni and friends of the College, click here.

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