What Works – Juntos Podemos
Dearest Friends, Volunteers, and Supporters:
21 Dec 2018
Happy New Year 2019! I want to thank everyone to make possible A Dream Came True! Many of us spent their time, energy, and dollars to support the “What Works – Juntos Podemos 2018” conference held in December. Gracias, we had over 100 attendees from across the United States, Latin America, and the Caribbean. Such a wonderful gathering of visionaries under the leadership of our president John McPhail and whom we are committed in a common goal – building a better life for the people in our hemisphere.
Chapter Leaders Together!
The first goal of this conference was to bring together our chapter’s leaders, Partners members as well as friends to discuss the issues facing our chapters and to develop strategies in initiatives and how it will impact our volunteerism roles in the upcoming years. Mission accomplished!
The conference was informative and worthwhile. I believe that our diverse and dynamic group of speakers and panelists provided in-depth insight, as well as actionable and practical tools of engagement models. Methods and mechanisms provided during our Ignite pre-conference session and the layout of five-year vision to grow and sustain Partners impact in the Western Hemisphere presented by Partners’ President and CEO Mr. John McPhail will give us the means to work over the coming years and will help our chapter members to network and contribute to and benefit from the new outcomes.
During our first day reception, we had a special recognition: Network Innovator Award Janet Brummond in Memoriam for her contribution to connecting the Partners of the Americas Network through the What Works Conferences presented by Betty Brown, Colorado Chapter and Partners of the Americas. Following the ceremony Stephen Wachter, Guitarist, and Jan’s husband played three beautiful music pieces.
We don’t want to forget the amazing youth Mariachis “Los Potrillos” from Jefferson High School, Varsity. Through community engagement, they have an important role to keep by spreading our Hispanic roots through music.
The First Responders training was a success through the leadership of our stellar volunteers Douglas Stevenson and Dither Moreno. I want to commend our Firefighters from Texas and Mexico (Queretaro, Yucatan, Jalisco, Guanajuato, Veracruz, Tamaulipas). Doug and crew will extend their teaching International Trauma Life Support -beginners and advance classes in other states in Mexico and other countries.
Full days of surprises: City of San Antonio Proclamation What Works – Juntos Podemos during the 300 years celebration in the Heart of Texas and presented to John. The presence of our Bexar County Commissioner Tommy Calvert. The presentation of the 50+ Years of Collaboration and Partnership: the Texas Chapter History Mr. Robert G “Bob Honts, Founder of Texas Chapter, Eryk Rios, an excellent young man (21 Yrs.)
Challenges, of course, we have a few! They help us be more creative working with a diversity of volunteers all over Texas including youth members. These challenges helped us to embrace the youth initiative and gave us the opportunities to be open-minded and to merge our goals in one voice including our old school strength.
I have to mention, we were strike by erratic weather for San Antonio. It reminded me my first rain experienced in Texas and first words during my English classes “Rain rain go away Come again some other day” and I have to say thank you for your support and showing up at the Mexican Culture Institute reception.
San Jose Mission Ride and Taquiza Truck were canceled too slippery and wet roads. Safety first! This event took a lot of effort. I applaud the Watcher Family and crew who gathered more than 30 bikes for our guests, many days of planning. Bravo! Love your enthusiasm and young spirit.
Your Presence on the dance floor
The evening would not have been the same without your presence at the Gala Dinner and your dancing shoes. Roxy Rios presented our entertainment Guest: Boricua en San Antonio: Izis “la enfermera de la salsa.” Izis is originally from Puerto Rico and has managed to combine his passion for music and his work as a nurse of the armed forces, her talent enhanced our Gala dinner with great music.
Many awards were presented. One of them Recognition in Honor of Life, Times and Creation of Dr. Jacqui Von Honts. Dr. Jacqui Von Honts 1980 Partners Mural and 1971 Terremoto Earthquake John Wayne Film to John Mc Phail Partners President.
It was a yearlong, monumental project to undertake and without my wonderful supporters, it would not have come to fruition.
I also want to thank anyone who helped Texas Partners in any way in 2018. We are committed to continuing our work to Connect, Serve and Change Lives in 2019! I hope you will join me on this adventure. My thoughts and prayers are with all of you this holiday season. I want to wish everyone a Happy Holidays and a very Happy and Healthy New Year.
Special Thanks to all our sponsors beginning by your attendance, Carol Fimmen, Alamo Colleges, Dr. Jackie Claunch, Dr. Abel Navarro UTSA, Dr. Carlos Ayala, Engineering Students, Consulado de Mexico en San Antonio, EL Hotel el Tropicano, Dr. Alberto Arroyo, Linda Martinez, Vanessa Rojas, Lyda Arevalo, Eryk Rios, John Ashurst, Barbara Naworol, Barbara Bloch and POA staff. For more details please check www.partners.net.