The retreats for Coordinators were developed during 2015 as an opportunity for the management team to come together and talk about changes that might have come about in the organisation, what they want to change, issues they face, their job roles, etc. This was the third Coordinators retreat of the year, but it was my first. I had come back to EduCARE after three months in Nepal and decided to take up the role of Centre Manager in a new centre in Punjab called Harike/Makhu. I had worked in EduCARE earlier in the year in Rait as the Project Manager for sustainable living and SWASH. But this time I wanted to get some management skills and try something new. However I didn’t really know much about my role and what I had to do. I am also very young as I turned 18 this year, and I don’t have any past experience or management skills.
I had just come back to India at the beginning of October and went straight to the Coordinators retreat after being back for about a week. I hadn’t yet gone to my centre in Punjab and I was still confused about what I had to do and what my job role was. I had read some documents before coming and had some idea of which ones were my tasks, but I still lacked some knowledge. At the retreat there were Centre Managers, Management team members (HR, Communications, Directors, etc.), Operations Coordinator and the Project Coordinators. At the time, about half the organisation were involved in all the management job roles, so about 20 people joined the retreat!
The retreat went for 4 days and I found it very informative and useful. I got to talk to other Centre Managers and was able to ask them questions about the role and what they thought I needed to do. We had workshops and meetings where all of us would work together to create new systems and plans for the organization, discuss and outline what we need from the organization (facilities, support, etc.) problems we faced (as Centre Manager’s, Project Coordinator’s, etc.). We made a to do list of all our weekly, monthly, quarterly and yearly tasks so that we could manage our time well and stay on top of everything. We also had team building activities where we came closer as a group and even went on a camel safari and spent the night in the desert J. And we did many other amazing workshops and meetings!!
I really enjoyed this retreat and everything in it. I learnt so much and met so many new people. I got a better understanding of my job role and everyone else’s job role within the organization. But what I learnt the most is that EduCARE is one big family and we are all here to support each other with our job. I LOVE YOU EDUCARE!!
Ethan Donovan – Australia
Harike Center Coordinator, Harike (Punjab)