Presidents and Board Members Meet took place in New Delhi from 11th to 13th February, 2018 where 14 Presidents and 9 Board Members came together to discuss strategies and plan of action for the year of 2018.
During the three day meet, various sessions were conducted to update, inform and share new updates with everyone. These are:
- Highlights of 2017: Highlights of 2017 was a power point presentation shared by departments staffers where each talked about their departmental achievements, accomplishments with focus on the programs for 2018.
- Network Strategy & Alignment with AFS India: The objective of this Session was to reiterate strengthening of the growth of the organization with a focus on flagship sending and hosting programs and align the strategy to the AFS IND context. To discuss more about each of the areas of action of Network Strategy, staffers with their group presented each of the areas of action while focusing on what has been done and what can be done to align India’s strategy with Network Strategy at grassroots as well as National Level.
- 1 to 1 Meeting with Board Members & Presidents: One to one meeting with Board Members & Presidents provided a platform to Board Members & Presidents to engage in discussion where they got to learn about chapter dynamics while exploring various challenges that each is facing in their chapter. Each chapter with respective Board Members talked in length about chapter development, issues, positive aspects and much more. Through this meeting, Board gave their input and helped each President prioritize their goals and vision at chapter level so that they can be in alignment with India’s as well as Network Strategy.
- New Programs: In process of preparing for the new programs for the next cycle, departments set the background of the new programs the departments will be conducting in 2018. The interactive session involved providing information to the presidents on the new programs, clarifying doubts in terms of implementation and taking suggestions on how it can be implemented.
- Training Capsule I: Intercultural Learning | Building Deeper Relationships: The objective of the session was to understand the role of sharing information and receiving feedback in building deeper relationships, how to build trust intentionally into relationships and the work environment, how to improve communication to bring better mutual understanding and how to analyse the strength and weakness of chapter using Glad, Mad, Sad model to capitalize the potential of volunteers for successful attainment of goals of the chapter. Methodology adapted was of interactive sessions using Johari’s windows to know the chapter and how to use different communication styles for better communication and avoiding misunderstanding.
- Training Capsule II: Conflict Transformation: Study of Case Studies: The objective of Conflict Transformation session was to introduce concept of Conflict Transformation to the participants with focus on understanding conflict within AFS. A comparative analysis of Resolution and Transformation was also done with focus on learning about various lenses of Conflict Transformation. Session’s learning was implemented using the case studies relevant to AFS. Each participant were given time to reflect of theory and lenses of John Paul Lederach. Participants learned about how to tackle immediate situation while seeing the bigger picture of understanding deeper context and finding framework to get to creative solutions.
- P2P between Presidents & Staff: P2P with staffers was done with the aim of understanding chapter dynamics. Presidents were given chance to talk about chapter development and how National Office can provide support to them for the growth and development of chapter and its volunteers. Staffers engaged in discussion where they asked about overall update or chapter related to hosting, sending, school, communications, branding etc. Through the P2P, staffers gained better insights of chapter and its dynamics which will help in making a significant plan of action in future.
- Plan of Action (Network Strategy): Plan of Action of Network Strategy was about seeing India’s strategy in the field of Programs, Advocacy, Education & Volunteerism and work on making plan of action so that it can be in alignment with Network Strategy. It was a continuation session from last day where Presidents gave their input of what activities, workshops, training, innovations & ideas can be incorporated in various areas of action to reach to set goals of Network Strategy after keeping in mind the realities of chapter and India by large. Compiled plan of action will be shared for implementation at later stage.
- 15th YES Anniversary & it’s Importance: The presidents were introduced to the yearlong activity calendar prepared by AFS IND to commemorate the 15th anniversary of the YES program focusing on the alumni meet, an upcoming event and were asked to motivate their chapter alumni to actively participate in the same. Board Chair of AFS India shared the importance of YES program with the presidents followed by staffer talking about the role of American Centre / Embassy in YES program. There was also a cake cutting ceremony conducted in the presence of Board Members, Presidents and staff.
- Visibility of AFS India: Visibility of AFS India session was a comprehensive session which focused on giving update about AFS India’s presence in Social Media, understanding importance of Press Release, significance of sharing impact stories, new video development, concepts of fundraising & donation with focus on association with external organization for doing events. A new campaign was introduced to involve school students as volunteers with AFS India to bring quality volunteers.
With commitment numbers from chapters, Presidents & Board Members Meeting finally came to an end.
Board Chair, Board Members & National Director each appreciated the Presidents & talked about the hard work they are putting in chapter and how their advancement can help AFS be a leader in volunteerism. We’d like to thank you everyone for taking out time and being part of the Meet.