As another summer comes to an end, it’s that time of year of when we reflect on all the great work that our volunteers have been part of and look to the future – what can we do more of or better next year? Since taking on the role of Chairman of the Board of Trustees about 6 months ago, I have to admit that most of my thoughts have been on the future – where is EPAfrica heading and what do all those who are involved want from this charity? These are really difficult questions.
When you take on a leadership position in business, they talk about a 100 day plan…the first 100 days being a critical part of shaping the future. My first 100 days have definitely come and gone but I’m really pleased with what the Board and Management Committee (MC) have been able to achieve in that time – we have delivered another successful summer but also we’ve been able to provide a little more clarity about what the future holds for EPAfrica and we launched our exciting plans for EPAfrica 2020 at the Alumni Dinner.
Since the Alumni Dinner, I have spoken to many people to gauge their reaction and most seem genuinely excited and committed to this vision for the future. Many have asked me: ‘Is this really achievable?’ The honest answer is ‘I don’t know’. But what I do know is that all those involved with EPAfrica are passionate about what we do and so we should be ambitious in our targets over the next five years and we should all do our best to try to achieve our strategy.
With that in mind, the Board and MC have developed a one year plan for EPAfrica 2020. This outlines what we pledge to achieve over the first year of our strategy and the activities that we need to be focused on. You can find the details of this year one plan here. We will keep this website updated with the latest progress and watch out for future blog posts with updates on how we are doing.
Working towards an ambitious strategy is a daunting task. However, watching the below TEDx talk recently really made me smile and think confidently about the future of EPAfrica.
Not only does this talk of how important it is to acknowledge ‘the reciprocal nature of giving’, which is fundamental to our charity culture, it also introduced me to the concept of Ubuntu – the idea that our personal wellbeing is dependent on the wellbeing of others. Essentially this is the idea that we are all somehow connected. I think that EPAfrica 2020 sets us up to be even better Ubuntu facilitators!
I would hope that, in reflecting on our year one plan, all of us – Board, MC, our partner schools, funders, alumni, workstreams – would embody the concept of Ubuntu, getting behind this plan and looking for ways to contribute. We are a brilliantly collaborative organisation and I’m excited to see how over the course of our first year on this EPAfrica 2020 journey we can all grow, develop and extend the brilliant work we do.