I didn't even realize that the month has gone by so fast.
so, here's a RECAP
June was such a bustle but July was even more of a hustle. I didn't realize that almost a month has gone by since I last updated my website. So I will try to keep this entry short, sweet yet image-filled. (AKA maraming picture)
So yes, this month has just been really busy and its going to get even busier. In a few days I will be facilitating, alongside Imma, my first ever BRUSH CALLIGRAPHY workshop. Ill write all about it after the class ends.
So this is it for now.
Sorry I've been MIA for the past few days. Hubby and I have just gotten back from our first ever JCI Asia Pacific Conference (ASPAC).
The JCI ASPAC is a conference of all JCI organizations in the Asia Pacific Region. Final tally of the hosting organization (JCI Malaysia) approximated a total of 3,200 registrants attending the 5 day festivities in Kota Kinabalu.
Hubby and I have never been to KK and despite the earthquake early in the month we packed our bags for the flight. Another incentive is that JCI Legazpi had 4 bids for the ASPAC Awards while JCI Daraga (my chapter) had 1 for Project Liwanag: a baby project of mine which started in 2013.
Aside from JCI activities, we also decided to see what this side of Malaysia had to offer Sabah Island after all used to belong to the Philippines.
Highlights of our Trip:
Last March 28, my year as President of JCI Daraga had finally ended. Months of meetings, projects, stress, highlights, lowlights and memories culminated in the official Turn-Over and Induction Ceremonies held in Casablanca Hotel.
Preparations for an induction takes months especially since this was to be a joint celebration with JCI Legazpi and Legazpi Dawani. For me, as outgoing president, this meant preparing an audio visual presentation of the year that was, tokens of appreciation for noteworthy members or partners and most particularly my VALEDICTORY ADDRESS.
I was stumped-- how can you condense 12 months of flurried frenzied activity in a 5 minute speech? In all honesty it took me a while to find my unifying thought-- what was I going to say? Who was I going to thank? What would I want my presidency to be remembered as? I never expected that the journey of writing my speech would be a very emotional one. After two hours of steady writing I finally finished it -- oddly enough I couldn't go through reading it without tearing up somehow.
It is no secret that JCI Daraga was a shambled mess when I inherited it-- factions, politics, misunderstanding and disorganization were some of the biggest problems I faced internally. Coupled with this, Yolanda struck the Philippines only after 2 months after I assumed the position. How could I possible mobilize my organization to become a leading chapter of positive change in the nation when we were broken to begin with?
But power on we did mainly because I had a highly qualified, motivated and rearing-to-go-set of officers who were as willing --if not MORE so-- to prove their mettle. We hit the ground running, come November of 2014 we had already rolled 2 of our biggest projects that year: Regional Oplan Kaagapay Drive (for Yolanda Victims) and Project Liwanag (a humanitarian mission that distributed 100 lamps to families with no electrical access and won the JCI PHILIPPINES TEMIONG AWARD for BEST CIVIC INVOLVEMENT PROGRAM). This was just a forecast of what the rest of our year was going to be-- after these two projects we spearheaded numerous more aimed at developing our communities and ourselves.
My year of fulfilling the national mission of "Changing the Future Today" has become one of the greatest experiences of my life. Being president of an organization -- specifically of JCI Daraga -- tested, molded and strengthened me. I will not lie, there were times when I really wanted to give up. But I have always been competitive and I wanted to prove that we could overcome our brokenness. And that we did!
Every year JCI holds Area and National Conferences. During these events best projects and practices are bid against each other to win in different categories. JCI Daraga brought home it's most number of Dangal Awards (the Southern Luzon Area Award) to date: eight. And subsequently brought home 4 recognitions during the national Temiong Awards Night.
I couldn't have asked for a more blessed culmination of my chapter's hard work and determination. Winning those awards didn't just give us recognition from our peers but proved ourselves stronger than what we initial thought.
Watching the AVP during the induction ceremonies I found myself tearing up behind the podium. It was as if I was brought back to those moments and made to remember all the hard work, sweat and steely determination we poured out just to make sure we did our projects right.
In the end the process wasn't just transformative for our beneficiaries but for us as well. I couldn't have been more proud of my organization and was reminded of the saying "(Jesus) never said it would be easy, (He) said it would be worth it".
What is the Junior Chamber International (or JCI)?
Well for those who arent in the know it is a non-government, non-profit organization of young active citizens that seek to create positive change. It first started in the United States in 1915 (yes we are celebrating our 100 years anniversary) and quickly spread throughout the world.
Personally, JCI for me has become a family tradition. My grandfather was a former chapter president of JCI Legazpi. My father was an Executive Vice President for JCI Paranaque Pambato. My husband and I became presidents of our respective chapters in the same year. And so many of our uncles, cousins and relatives are members too.
Being members of this organization has continued to strengthen our family value of being civic-oriented.
And I didnt realize how much it molded me until I attended and facilitated a training during this weekend's Regional Training Celebration called PA-HABOL (Bicol for "weave").
There were many available courses and I was lucky enough to attend those by JCI Sen Romme Gerodias (from San Pedro, Laguna).
The first course I attended was all about managing a chapter -- new members, succession planning, administrative functions, etc. And it couldn't have come at a most opportune time! After my term, we are now faced with the challenge of grooming the 2016 Board of Directors. Who will step-up from the ranks of our regular members to continue the legacy of JCI Daraga?? It is a question I dont have an answer to just yet.
JCI EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATIONS
I followed up the Admin course with one on how to effectively communicate. This course isnt just applicable in running a local organization but in everyday life. Communicating effectively is a fundamental characteristic everyone should develop -- by making sure your messages are properly sent, received and UNDERSTOOD-- this will help curb a lot of the misunderstandings, confusion and negativity in this world.
Wouldnt you agree?
The last training I participated in for DAY 1 was one I had to facilitate myself -- JCI NETWORKING.
It was kind of ironic for me to train this particular course, especially when some people have started to get the perception that our organization was a gateway to multi-level marketing even if it isn't.
But push on!!
By conducting the course it laid a lot of the misunderstanding to rest because the essence of CORRECT networking is turnign your contacts (people you meet) into CONNECTIONS and RELATIONSHIPS. It shouldnt be about selling and buying -- which is just a byproduct of a good relationship. But more about creating meaningful friendships with people that you encounter.
This morning was dedicated to the young and young at heart.
JCI Daraga with a host of other organizations joined the first ever Albay Youth Caravan which was held today in the Albay Astrodome. I personally saw many of our partner organizations such as the Philippine Army, Navy and Air Force. And the astrodome was jam-packed with kids from all over the province.
This was first conceptualized because there has been rising incidents of adolescent pregnancy and school delinquency. To curb this trend, the youth caravan aimed to provide seminars ranging from proper nutrition to anti bullying in order to equip the kids and train them to make smarter choices.
We of course brought along our WADWATS Anti-bullying campaign which Suzette facilitated. Unfortunately I was no longer in the area when they were giving this talk, but photos from the event showed a very attentive audience. I hope they were able to take home a lot of valuable things.
It is truly inspiring to see a convergence of stakeholders really focusing on the needs of children. Many do not realize it but if we neglect their needs we are contributing to a decline in our society-- thus our future.
Who is sab_adventures?
I have always wanted to write. This will now be a creative outlet-- home to all my arts and crafts. So feel free to browse around my everyday adventures.