Hello to our wonderful Eddie Rice family.
We have been very excited by how many volunteers have engaged with us over the last few months and it is always delightful to see your faces as we learn to engage online. This engagement to date has been quite a success and has opened us up to new possibilities of connecting with you. We have run our executive leader training and facilitated our many committee meetings via the zoom platform. We have been very impressed by how successful this medium has been. Thank you for learning with us!
For the moment, as you might expect, all our face to face programs and events cannot run. Overseen by the ERMO Board of Governance, we have been advised that face-to-face programs cannot resume prior to the 31st of July. This has meant we will not be delivering our Winter Camp Programs, our New Leader Training Day or any fundraising events for the interim.
We have however recently formed a Program Development Working Group who are reviewing our programs and considering how we can and might adjust our service delivery in this Covid-19 world.
We are also using this time to work on all our projects that have been on our wish list, including the development of a new website! We’ve also formed a Grant Writing Committee, Social Media Working Group, and begun planning for celebrations marking 40 years of camps in Victoria.
In addition, at an Oceania-wide level, Edmund Rice Ministries Oceania (ERMO) have been using this time to bring together each of the 14 Edmund Rice Services. There has been great collaboration, knowledge sharing and development of understanding across our entities with many joint initiatives and projects gaining traction. Work is being undertaken across Evaluation, Communications, IT systems, Funding and Income Generation and Sustainability. Through these collaborative projects we are working towards strengthening our capacity and capability to deliver impactful programs.
Lastly, in this National Volunteer Week, I would like to say how grateful we are for all our volunteers. Your ongoing support, engagement and willingness to serve is highly valued. We could not do this without you! As I use this time of forced distance to reflect and find those silver linings, it has helped me to appreciate the incredible value of being physically present in relationship with others. As something that has been greatly missed at this time, the value of physical presence has never been more keenly felt. This is one of the greatest gifts you provide in delivery of our services. So for the 9,110 hours of direct engagement you collectively provided to our participants throughout 2019, thank you for your gift of presence!