UN Stories, U.S. Voices: Helen and Albert Reynolds
For almost 50 years, Helen and Albert Reynolds have been promoting peace and advocating for the world’s most vulnerable. Together, they co-founded the UNA Blue Ridge Chapter, and now retired, these lifelong advocates spend their time advocating for world peace.
Helen and Albert began their involvement during the peace movements in California during the 1970s, participating in rallies to end wars and foster a movement for international solidarity. They rallied in San Francisco and then moved onto bigger rallies in Washington, D.C. to continue the promotion of peace. Wanting to continue their grassroots advocacy, they founded the UNA Blue Ridge Chapter in 2003 and began advocating for full funding for the UN on Capitol Hill. Helen says that developing a strong chapter filled with diverse advocates was a source of pride.
“It’s been a real treat to listen to people’s stories whether they are educators, grassroots advocates or just general members. It has been wonderful for me to listen to people. I always want to see how diverse the support is for the UN.”
The Reynolds reflect fondly over their excitement for the Millennium Development Goals, which were adopted in 2000, and then their continued passion for the Sustainable Development Goals. While claiming that she can’t pick favorites, Helen says SDG 15–Life on Land–will always hold a special place in her heart.
“World peace is the most important thing because it’s so essential that we should have a place that the nations of the world can talk instead of fight,” Helen said. “It’s tremendously important and we think that the general assembly brings a lot of people together from all different countries in the world to discuss international problems, it shows that we can be a lot more effective if we work together.”
Peacebuilding is so crucial to achieving the United Nations goals. As members in this new era, we can reflect upon those who helped build the platform that we work on today, and carry the torch toward our continued goal of world peace. Helen and Albert prove that we are stronger together and that our actions, no matter how small, make a difference in this world.
In a series called “UN Stories, U.S. Voices,” we will be finding opportunities throughout the year to highlight some of the amazing histories and connections UNA-USA members have to the UN to celebrate its 75th anniversary.