So. What do you get when you take 13 committed Ikamvanites from 3 provinces, bundle them into trains, planes and automobiles and ship them all the way to Kleinmond’s beautiful Grail Centre for a jam-packed week’s worth of crystalizing the big picture vision for our future? Well, if Day 1 is anything to go by … a whole LOT of fun and some serious hard work.
Amid a series of challenges, we all eventually arrived at the quaint coastal village with just enough energy to enjoy a special ‘Lungelo dinner’ before practically passing out to the sound of pine trees swaying above. Then it was up early and to work! We started out getting know the group better – in the modern NGO world of keeping costs low and mastering efficiencies, most of us have only ever met ‘virtually’ via Skype. Getting to know who we are, why we joined IkamvaYouth (for the ‘new’ knights) or why we are still with IY and sharing our skills and talents, we then looked at our expectations for the week.
Let me share a few of these with you now:
– The structure of IkamvaYouth and our channels of support
– Consolidating where we are and what we are doing well so we can build our vision for the future
– the Financial Matters of resources, processes, internal controls, budgets and reporting (roll on tomorrow!)
– Addressing learner, tutor and branch challenges using the pooled knowledge and experience of Ikamvanites from 5 National branches
We got right in and delved into the ‘structure’ of IY – now and where we want to be in the future. As Jo (Ivory Park, Branch Coordinator) said “we fell asleep and dreamed a dream…” which led us to some inspiring and creative organograms that better represent the kind of organisation IY is. And at the core of it is all are our LEARNERS!
We looked at working with people as opposed to working ‘for’ people – that we are accountable to each other as part of a team – with Andrew (Gauteng Director) drawing an interesting analogy with a team sport – where you need team members, a captain, the infrastructure of field and a referee to make sure we are playing by the rules (especially when you are trying to get a stick on the ground. And when we are all on the same team, working towards a common goal, we need to communicate and the choose the words we use with care.
Another very important point that came out of our discussions and brainstorming is how our IY values need to be at the core of everything we do – and these encompass the entire organisation – from learners to BranchCom, staff, tutors and our Board. EVERYONE. And just to remind you briefly what they are:
– By youth, for youth
– Transparency & Openness
From there, we looked at the different roles and responsibilities of the various stakeholders – learners, tutors, BranchCom, NatCom and the Board. And after that, it was a trip to the beach for a swim (our brave visitor from up north, Jo) and time to look at our personal roles and Key Performance Indicators. Yes, ma…we are all grown up!
Which brings us to where we are right now. After an award-winning dinner from our inhouse Table Bay chef, some of us are already in bed and dreaming of the bright future we have ahead us, others are working on their studies, forging friendships that will last a lifetime and then there are those of us who are busy blogging tonight and preparing to present tomorrow. Watch this space: there’s bound to be a Survivor – Finance Training update tomorrow…