This post was written for ICAI’s monthly bulletin the Global Buzz, November 2015.
The Institute of Cultural Affairs is a global community of non-profit organisations advancing human development worldwide. The ICAI network comprises member organisations and related groups in over 40 countries. The role of ICA International is to facilitate peer-to-peer interchange, learning and mutual support across the network, for greater and deeper impact. ICA International maintains consultative status with UN ECOSOC, UNESCO, UNICEF, WHO & FAO.
The ICAI Board at its October Board meeting was happy to approve requests for financial support toward two ICA regional gatherings that are coming up soon.
The ICA Europe MENA gathering to be hosted by ICA Netherlands near Amersfoort from November 20-22 is expecting around 24 participants from most ICAs in Europe, plus ICA MENA from Egypt and ICA colleagues from Poland, Moldova and Kazakhstan. The programme is planned to include sharing of stories and exploring shared values and ICA methods, as well as preparing for the 2016 ICAI Global Conference to be convened in partnership with Initiatives of Change in Switzerland next year.
The ICA Asia Pacific gathering to be hosted by ICA India near Pune from November 29-December 5 is expecting around 30 participants from most ICAs in that region, plus colleagues of IAF India . The programme will include training, site visits and excursions as well as workshops in preparation for the 2016 Global Conference.
Also during the Board meeting we began to prepare for the online ICAI General Assembly meetings to be held on Thursday 10 December at 10am UK & 5pm UK time, followed by asynchronous voting over 10 days by surveymonkey. ICAI members and colleagues are encouraged to save the date, and ensure that their statutory membership dues are renewed if necessary before the GA vote. We have received completed applications for Associate membership from ICA partners NCOC Kenya and SCR Kenya.
Following the Board meeting, Board members spent time familiarising themselves with the workings of the new ICAI website, in order to be able to update their own Board member profiles and support member ICAs in their regions to update their ICA profiles and post news updates. Meet the first to have done so – ICAI members Emerging Ecology USA, ICA:UK, Bospo BiH, SNF Uganda & Lambassa ICA Benin and ICAI Board members Staci Kentish, Svetlana Salamtova and myself. News updates have been posted from ICA Netherlands, Lambassa ICA Benin, ORP Institute Korea, ICA Chile and ICA Cote D’Ivoire. Member ICAs are encouraged to contact us for any support they might need to start using the new website themselves.
Also during the month we have been in contact with partners of ICA:UK and ICA Ukraine interested in starting new ICAs or ToP networks in Poland, Russia and Kazakhstan, and with colleagues of NIRADO Nigeria and Itereleng ICA South Africa working on renewing ICAs on those countries.
We have continued to support the work of the ICAI Global ToP Policy working group and the ICAI 2016 Global Conference working group, each of which met online at least once during October. The Global ToP policy group has prepared a survey for circulation soon to member ICAs to gather baseline data on current ToP facilitation, training and CTF certification activity and capacity of member ICAs around the world. The Global Conference working group is in conversation with the IofC Caux Foundation to identify and invite IofC representatives to join a joint conference team with a view to next agreeing an overall theme.