8 December, 2021

SCI’s 82nd International Committee Meeting

A glimpse into our democratic life

Service Civil International is a worldwide Movement of many different organisations that work together in a democratic way. In order to take collective decisions, SCI branches and groups meet twice a year at the International Committee Meeting (ICM), the highest decision-making body of SCI.

The 82nd ICM took place from 1 to 7 December 2021, online for the third time in history. People connected from different time zones, from Australia to Ireland, for 5 days of discussions and voting. Two break days gave time to participants to take part in two interesting workshops and to focus on casting the votes. The two workshops reflected on the following topics:

  • “Knowledge Management in SCI” by Alena and Wilbert, two SCI activists, and 
  • “The Evolution of research on SCI’s Methodology” by Anita, a Researcher from Chinese University of Hong Kong.

Before the meeting, different pre-sessions were organised to give more space to branches to discuss some topics in advance.

All technical aspects of the meeting ran very smoothly, with people now being used to ins and outs of online meetings: muting and unmuting oneself, requesting to speak in an organised order, joining breakout rooms and voting online.

 

The sessions

On day 1, Jackie, the International President, opened the meeting with a reflection on the role of SCI in today’s world and with a warm welcome to everyone present: around 40 participants from 23 SCI Branches and Groups, as well as Working Groups and other international bodies. After some procedural matters, participants followed up on resolutions and recommendations from the previous years, received the highlights from the Exchange Platform Meeting and had the chance to listen to different reports on what SCI bodies accomplished this year. Ingrid, SCI’s representative of SCI at CCIVS, as well as outgoing CCIVS President, gave a presentation on SCI activities with CCIVS and welcomed the new SCI representative: Hemamali.

Day 2 gave space to Working groups to present the work in their regions and discussed the idea of a new international campaign for the movement. The Plan of Action 2021 was evaluated and the Plan of Action for next year discussed; finally, resolutions and recommendations were presented to all participants.

Day 3 was all about finances: looking at this year’s accounts and future budget. New IEC candidates were also presented and given time for a Q&A session.

Day 4 was the time to discuss resolutions, recommendations and amendments. Some animated debates took place, showing SCI’s variety of points of view and backgrounds, but always keeping a very respectful tone and collaborative attitude.

Being the 5th of December – the International Day of Peace – the international volunteering fair was happening parallel to the meeting and participants to the ICM paid it a visit during their break.

The last day, urgent resolutions and recommendations were presented and voted upon, and the IEC elections took place. It was then time for the 2021 Pierre Cérésole awards! Before ending the meeting with an evaluation moment and closing statements, we took a moment to thank important members of the Movement who are stepping down from their roles this year. The evaluation was done in an interactive way, with a colourful Jamboard, and it was very positive.

 

The Pierre Cérésole Awards

Every year we award branches’ projects that deserve special mention because of their innovative nature or the impact they achieved. The 2021 Pierre Cérésole awards were given to:

  • SCI Malaysia for the category “Promotion of SCI values and history” with their project “99+1 Nasi Ahad”. 
  • SCI Italy won the prize for the category “Social Inclusion” with their project “MicroProS”. 

It is always inspiring to hear success stories from projects that have such a visible positive impact on the local community involved. Congratulations to the winners!

     

 

Saying au revoir

This year, many people who played an important role in SCI at the international level are stepping down from their roles, and we too a moment to thank them: 

Jackie stepped down from being SCI’s International President, after 5 years in the IEC, of which one year as President. We deeply appreciated her commitment to SCI, her strategic thinking and her focus to get things done. We also recognised her kindness and generosity on a personal level, and that is why it is so difficult to see her leave the IEC, but we also know that it is not goodbye but au revoir!

Chantal, SCI’s International Coordinator, is moving on to new plans for her life and we wished her all the best. She started in SCI as the Communication and Volunteer Coordinator, and in that role she oversaw the creation of a new logo and visual identity, as well as coordinated several international volunteers in the office. As International Coordinator, she navigated SCI and the IS office through the Covid-19 pandemic, proposing new ways of working together and taking very good care of everyone.

Parag, IEC member, ended his mandate at the IEC after some difficult moments during the pandemic as a doctor himself. His contribution and willingness to help whenever he could did not go unnoticed.

Alena, Project Officer at the International Secretariat, is leaving the office in February. Her knowledge and expertise, as well as her attention to the people involved in the projects, will be missed by the Movement.

Finally, the 2020 Team will conclude their mandate at the end of the year, after working with dedication for 7 years and having accomplished so much in the 100 anniversary campaign. They kept the celebration of SCI’s 100th anniversary to the forefront and pushed everyone to reflect on our past, present and future. Some activities, such as a Vision Seminar, will carry on to next year and support the process to create a new Strategic Plan.

 

Our new International Executive Committee

The last day of ICM saw the election of two new IEC members: Bert Verstappen, who was already a co-opted member for one year, and Alena Lemisev from SCI Germany.

Our new International Executive Committee is now composed of: Hemamali as acting President, Alexandra as Treasurer, Silvio, Antonios, Bert, and Alena. We want to congratulate and extend a warm welcome to the new IEC members, and wish good luck to the new team!

 

Conclusion

Thanks to the efforts of the IEC, staff and volunteers from the international secretariat, this annual meeting was able to proceed smoothly. It was an intensive week of discussions, voting, and learning from each other; and some interactive sessions and side-events were also organised, to keep the SCI family spirit alive even online. With the plan of action, new resolutions, and decisions that were taken, we start a new and fresh year full of international cooperation. 

We thank everyone for being part of this 82nd ICM!

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