June 2002

Our General Secretary Nominated for Appointment as Secretary General of the World Alliance of YMCAs

It is with great pleasure that I write this note to announce that Mr. Bart Shaha, our General Secretary has been nominated by the Search Committee for the World Alliance Secretary General as the sole candidate for appointment as Secretary General of the World Alliance at the World Council in July. The announcement of Bart's nomination by the Search Committee has been welcomed not only by national movements in our region, but also other national movements and areas around the world. Congratulatory messages continue to be received.

The Search Committee, appointed by the World Alliance Executive Committee undertook the search process for the new Secretary General to replace Mr. Nicholas Nightingale, Secretary General of the World Alliance of YMCAs, following his announcement in December 2001, of his early retirement. The Search Committee had interviewed the short-listed candidates in Geneva on 31 May, after a thorough selection process that included the submission of a paper outlining their philosophy and perspectives on the future of the World YMCA, and an assessment exercise conducted by an external consultant with expertise in Executive Recruiting.

We are very pleased and honoured by Mr. Bart Shaha's achievement and are sure that he will bring the same commitment and dedication that he has demonstrated here in the region, to the World Alliance.

Kan Tanikawa, President
Asia and Pacific Alliance of YMCAs



1. Search Process for New General Secretary for the Area to Begin Soon Goto Top

Mr. Kan Tanikawa, the President of the Alliance, has written to all National Movements in regard to the formation and composition of the Search Committee to select a nominee for appointment as the new General Secretary for our Area. The Search Committee will prepare an appropriate time frame for the Search process, which will be shared with National Movements after the World Council Meeting in July 2002.

Published by Asia and Pacific Alliance of YMCAs, 23 Waterloo Road, Kowloon, Hong Kong SAR
Tel: (852) 2780 8347 & 2770 3168; Fax : (852) 2385 4692; E-mail : office@asiapacificymca.org; URL : http://www.asiapacificymca.org

2. The 15th World Council : "Building Community - Transforming the World" Goto Top

The 15th World Council of YMCAs will gather around 800 delegates from 122 national YMCA movements worldwide in Oaxtepec, Mexico on July 15-20, 2002 with the theme "Building Community - Transforming the World". Around 120 delegates from the various national movements in the Asia and Pacific region will participate in this quadrennial event. The participation of youth from our region has been strengthened through special contributions by some National Movements.

The World Council provides inspiration and motivation; fosters the unity of the Movement; promotes fellowship and sharing; reviews global issues and strengthens the YMCA movement. The 15th World Council will, among other important matters, adopt the Governance Policy Agreement and Strategic Directions, an outcome of the Organisational Review Process. New Executive Committee Members, including the President and Officers will be elected. The new Secretary General will be appointed.

Members nominated by National Movements in our region for election as Executive Committee members are : Mr. Babu Markus Gomes Bangladesh; Mr. P.M. John, India; Ms. Toshiko Takeda, Japan; Dr Jai Chang Park, Korea; Mr. Edward Ong Keng Wan, Singapore; Mr. Sriyantha Senaratna, Sri Lanka; Mr. Jude Simion, Sri Lanka; and Mr. Nehemia Tainanuarii, Tahiti.

A "Challenge 21" Festival has been planned to share and motivate participants in implementing the Mission of the YMCA within different contexts. Around 200 young people are expected to participate in the Youth Council on July 12-14, 2002 aimed at promoting better interaction and to enable them to develop a common understanding of strategic issues and agenda of the World Council. The young people will also develop further the Youth Integrated Strategy through integration of regional perspectives and the World Alliance's Strategic Directions. A Workshop on Violence Against Women will be held on July 13-14, 2002. This Workshop will examine the understanding of violence against women, YMCA involvement in the issue, case studies and develop a YMCA Agenda against violence.

We are happy that many volunteers and professional staff from our region will give leadership in the "Challenge 21" Festival, the Workshops on Strategic Direction, the Caucus Meetings, the Youth Council and Workshop on Violence Against Women.

Meeting of Asian and Pacific Delegates at the World Council

Delegates from National Movements in the Asia and Pacific, especially voting delegates and other leaders are invited to a meeting on Monday, 15 July from 18.00 hrs. to 19.00 hrs. at the Amaranto Room, Oaxtepec Conference Centre. The meeting is to familiarise ourselves with each other, and discuss concerns in relation to the proceedings of the World Council.


3. Up-coming Regional and Sub-regional Programmes Goto Top

Regional Programme to Deliberate on Youth Policy and Action on Crucial Issues

We are glad to announce that as per decision of the Executive Committee Meeting held last March, the YMCA Deliberation on Youth Policy and Action will be held from 7 August 2002 (Arrival) - 12 August 2002 (Departure) in Cheonnan, Korea. The purpose of the programme is to formulate a collective mandate on student and youth work as one of the priorities in the region and develop strategies that will facilitate practical work to revive and strengthen the active and socially relevant student and youth work in the YMCAs.We are glad to announce that as per decision of the Executive Committee Meeting held last March, the YMCA Deliberation on Youth Policy and Action will be held from 7 August 2002 (Arrival) - 12 August 2002 (Departure) in Cheonnan, Korea. The purpose of the programme is to formulate a collective mandate on student and youth work as one of the priorities in the region and develop strategies that will facilitate practical work to revive and strengthen the active and socially relevant student and youth work in the YMCAs.

We invite YMCA volunteer leaders and professional staff who are decision-makers on student/youth work within their respective YMCAs; YMCA student and youth leaders who are actively involved in youth and student work and volunteer leaders and professional staff who are giving leadership in renewing student and other youth work in their YMCAs to participate in the said deliberations. Programme information and application forms have already been sent to the National Movements.

The Programme features a keynote presentation on Implementing Challenge 21 and the Movement's Vision for Action; Sharing of National Youth/Student Work Policies, On-going Thrusts and Actions, and Panel Responses to these presentations; Exposure to some youth programmes in Korea; Worship and Cultural Night.

Youth Exchange Programme Starts in September

To provide practical exposures to young people on the concrete actions and responses of YMCA to its mission that would enable young people to engage in youth issues and development work, we are organising a Youth Exchange Programme this year. The programme, approved by the Executive Committee last March, would enable the participants to acquire practical knowledge and skills to organise programmes in their respective YMCA situations.

Information on this programme has just been sent to National Movements. Kindly note that duly completed Forms should reach the Alliance Secretariat by 30 August 2002.

Preparation Begins for 16th General Assembly in 2003

In preparation for the 16th General Assembly to be held on 2-6 September 2003 in Singapore, a Team of invited resource persons, including writers will work together with the Executive Staff of the Alliance, from 30 August to 1 September 2002, in Hong Kong. The meeting will design an overall expression of the central theme proposed for the Assembly - a vision of building community, of promoting just peace, healing and transformation, and how to translate these into actions within our regional and national contexts.

Exchange Programme to Enhance Work With Migrant Workers

To strengthen partnerships between YMCA Migrant Workers Centres in sending countries and/or YMCAs in receiving countries of migrant workers, a two-week exchange programme will be held in September 2002 in Sri Lanka. The programme aims to facilitate in-depth experience in planning and implementing Migrant Workers empowerment programmes and reintegration programmes, and to foster closer partnership in the work. The Migrant Workers' Resource Centre of the YMCA of Philippines and the Migrant Workers' Centres of the YMCA of Sri Lanka and Bangladesh will participate in this exchange programme. Other such exchanges are being planned between sending and receiving countries.

Building Community and a Culture of Peace

The Alliance has held several deliberations during the past four years on the issue of building community and transformation. The global and regional events of the recent months have made recommendations of these programmes more relevant for the YMCA's further action. Concerns like Civil Society building, empowerment of peoples in the face of globalisation, interfaith partnerships, youth and gender equity - all trace the same path to the need for the YMCA to be promoters of a just peace for the transformation of society.

Thus a regional programme focusing on social advocacy and promotion of a culture of peace in the multi-cultural and multi-religious context of our region has been planned for 10-14 October 2002 in New Delhi, India. More information on this programme will be sent to National Movements soon.

Regional Gender Advocacy Workshop on Violence Against Women

On 6-12 November 2002, YMCA volunteer leaders and professional staff engaged in gender issues, women empowerment, social advocacy and education will meet in Bombay, India to discuss and reach a common understanding on the issue of violence against women, and draw concrete steps to advocate for gender equity through the YMCA. The programme also aims to increase the capacity of YMCA staff/volunteers to engage in such actions.

YMCA leaders, men and women, who are involved in women's empowerment and advocacy work and who desire to initiate advocacy and action programmes particularly on violence against women and gender justice are encouraged to participate in the programme. Details of the Workshop will be disseminated to National Movements in due course.

Preparations Underway for Advanced Studies Programme

Initiated 20 years ago, this year's Advanced Studies Programme will be held from 26 October to 29 November 2002 at the YMCA Wu Kwai Sha Youth Village, Hong Kong. The focus of the Studies is on Movement Building and participants are motivated to be proactive in responding to emerging issues, particularly in the face of globalisation. Participants will be provided opportunities to explore and develop a deeper understanding of current global trends and relevant methodologies to strengthen the movement dimension of their YMCAs. Workshops on Gender Equity, Information Technology, Fund-raising and Proposal Writing will also be conducted. The Invitation for participation had been sent out in March, 2002.

National Movements that have yet to send the names of their participants are requested to do so by 8 July to facilitate processing of Entry Visas.

4. New NGSs in Fiji, Australia, Singapore and Thailand Goto Top

We are happy to welcome the following National General Secretaries who have been appointed to their positions during the recent months : Mr. Semisi Saukuawa, Fiji and Mr. Bob Nicholson, Australia.

In Singapore, Mr. Eu Eng Kong, Executive Director of the Metropolitan YMCA has assumed the position of National General Secretary by rotation, from Mr. Ho Sun Yee, Executive Director of the YMCA of Singapore. Mr. Rachan Maneekarn, a Board Member of the Chiangmai YMCA, Thailand, has assumed the position of National General Secretary (Hony.) of Thailand, from Dr. Borriboon Thitakamol, Bangkok YMCA.

Executive Committee and Related Meetings - 2003

The Executive Committee and Standing Committees/Task Group Meetings
13-15 March 2003, Hong Kong

The National General Secretaries' Meeting
16 March 2003, Hong Kong

Bart Shaha
General Secretary
Asia and Pacific Alliance of YMCAs



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