An experience of synergy among development officers
Listening, sharing, and learning from one another were a big part of the meeting for its Development Officers.
Jesuit Conference of Asia Pacific held a meeting of its Development Officers in Singapore from April 28 to May 1.
The meeting brought together representatives from Singapore, Malaysia, China, Korea, Japan, Philippines, Indonesia, Thailand, Cambodia, Myanmar, Timor Leste and Australia, with Karen Goh from JCAP and Father Jorge Serrano SJ from the Curia in Rome joining as resource persons.
Listening, sharing, and learning from one another were a big part of the meeting.
"The individual sharing of development officers not only brought us up to date, but also gave new insights into Development officers group methods and approaches and empowered us to fundraise more effectively for the mission of our Provinces or Regions. In addition, we learned from one another how problems in our area could be solved and discussed how we could meet common challenges across the Conference more effectively," said Father Herb Schneider SJ, Executive Director of the Philippine Jesuit Aid Association, the development office of the Jesuit Philippine Province.
"The circumstances and issues faced by the group was so varied, and reflected the diversity and challenges faced in our Conference," said Father Simon Yi, Socius of the Jesuit Conference of Asia Pacific and coordinator of the meeting.
"The Australia Mission Office for example has more than a half century of experience; and on the other end of the spectrum, we have newly opened development offices in Thailand and Myanmar. The differences however enriched our gathering in learning, sharing, and understanding, with the well established offices helping the developing units who need a lot of practical advice and wisdom, and the newer units in turn showing Jesuit Aid calendar bringing their vitality and fresh perspectives," Father Yi explained.
Input sessions on communication including the development of effective newsletters, planning and budgeting, and disaster relief cooperation produced the same result.
"Across JCAP we feel more empowered and capable to do the work and mission entrusted to us," said Father Schneider, who was elected coordinator of the next meeting, which will be held in Cambodia in 2015.