The International Child and Youth Care conference was held in Ft. Lauderdale, Florida during the last week of May past and CYC-Net was there represented by Leon Fulcher, Chair of the CYC-Net Board, Fiona Sinclair, Program Coordinator for the Learning Zone Network at CYC-Net and Thom Garfat, Co-editor.
More than the people representing it, however, CYC-Net itself was present. It was almost as if it was “time” it seemed for CYC-Net to “come to the reunion”. People asked about how “it” was doing, inquired about ways of getting better connected, made offers to help CYC-Net out with some of its struggles, made suggestions about “doing things together” and wondered about its history. It was quite satisfying actually to see how many people know about CYC-Net. Now, a cynic might say that’s because the conference “like all the North American Child and Youth Care “Internationals” “is mostly a collection of North Americans who know CYC-Net but in a way, that’s the point, isn’t it?
So, how else was CYC-Net present? Well, on the 1st pre-conference day organised for educators and trainers, CYC-Net hosted a short end-of-day wine and cheese reception. Held on an outdoor patio, the event was a welcome end to the day for many who had worked hard. Leon and Thom, refusing to rely on the hotel, shopped for the wine themselves to ensure there was an international representation fitting for such an event. Here you see a photo of the reception which captures a little of the interactive nature of the moment.
During this reception, which was about more than cheese and wine, really, we had the opportunity to introduce the unfamiliar to CYC-Net and the Learning Zone Network. We did this because, after all, that was the whole point “to let people know that “we” are available.
Later in the conference Fiona made a presentation “well received we might add “on the Learning Zone Network. If you have not been there yet “go now and see what you are missing. Just click on the Learning Zone icon on the BACK TO CYC-Net. As a result of Fiona’s presentation – and we thank Kibble Education and Care Centre of Scotland (http://www.kibble.org/) for supporting her presence “the LZN will be testing some of the Learning Modules in a distant education format. Later, in presenting the 20 Key Assets Recording Tool developed for Foster Care Associates (a Learning Zone Network sponsor) Leon was also able to remind people of the courses available through the LZN@CYC-Net. In both cases people were both surprised and pleased with the Learning Modules available “even some long time supporters of CYC-Net were impressed with what’s available there. So, like I said, if you have not been, go now.
As well as “presenting”, CYC-Net was also on the receiving end. In a gesture of tremendous generosity, Bartimaeus (http://www.bartimaeus.com) presented a cheque for $5000 to CYC-Net in recognition of how much CYC-Net is used by their organisations members and in recognition of the contribution it makes to the field. We are grateful to Bill Carty, President of Bartimaeus for this donation and ringing endorsement of CYC-Net and its efforts.
Here Pat Gaughan of Bartimaeus is shown presenting the cheque to Leon.
Throughout the conference we were able to introduce CYC-Net to those who did not know it and had many opportunities to explore possible avenues for future developments. CYC-Net is well respected in the Child and Youth Care community and we appreciate the acceptance and support shown by many who let us know how they find it valuable.