Brighter Communities Worldwide were delighted and honoured to have Deirdre Clune MEP officiate at the launch of our new strategic plan at the Midleton Park Hotel on April 11th.
Among the participants at the launch were representatives from the local community, Councillor Susan Mc Carthy, President of Midleton Chamber Stephen Belton, Michael Deriaz from Friends of Kipleion in the UK, Tess Hogan Cork branch of Soroptimist International along with supporters, board members, staff, volunteers and friends.
We would also like to thank H.E. Ambassador Richard A. Opembe and his wife Suzanne Gachukia for joining us on our special night and for their continued support.
Deidre Clune spoke about her connection to Kenya, her involvement with the EU Parliament Africa Trust and Ireland’s commitment to increase its overseas aid spending to reach 0.7% of gross national income before 2030. In acknowledging that the communities we work with in Kenya and Ugandan are predominantly farmers, she spoke of the importance of encouraging projects that will add value to agriculture in Africa rather than focus only on export trade of fresh produce. She emphasized that the funding Brighter Communities Worldwide receive from Irish Aid is something to be proud of and something that should be highlighted because it is a mark of the confidence that the Irish Government has in the organisation and of the community development work being carried out.
The new strategic plan provides a roadmap for the future and responds to requests from more communities in Kenya and in Uganda to work with them to bring vital improvements to their lives to be able to access health, education, clean water and increased household incomes. The new plan sets out how the organisation can respond to this demand while recognizing there is still work to do in the communities they are currently working with.
The new strategic plan has four goals –
- Implement impactful programmes that contribute to the Sustainable Development Goals.
- Build effective strategic relationships
- Strengthen organizational capacity
- Ensure strong governance
Board members, Maria Kidney and Linden Edgell, presented the plan illustrating the process followed in developing the plan; how all stakeholders were engaged in the process through surveys, focus group discussions, interviews and feedback. The objectives of each goal were outlined and the role that the volunteer and supporter base in Ireland and around the world will have in achieving these goals was highlighted.
Maria Kidney spoke about partnerships “partnering is key to our growth and most recent partnership with communities in Adraa in Uganda is achieving great success as we share our model of community development with a new community”. She illustrated the need for men and women to work together to achieve gender equity in the communities where we work.
Linden Edgell spoke about how the plan will respond to key needs identified by the communities including access to clean water, focusing on youth unemployment in a country where over 50% of the population are under 30 years of age, the effects of climate change and how it impacts farming when there is either too much or too little rain and always at the wrong time and the desire to ensure greater visibility of people disabilities in the community.
Brighter Communities Worldwide’s CEO, Martin Ballantyne, said ‘I am excited about what we can achieve as we work together in the coming years to deliver on our vision for a world where strong, healthy communities can thrive, building sustainable livelihoods and brighter futures’.
For further information email or call firstname.lastname@example.org 021 4621748.