Saturday, 7 February 2009

World Water Day and strategic planning

The words strategic planning are not normally ones I would find inspirational or particularly energising, but after our leadership course this afternoon I may actually change my mind. Christine Anderson and Jo Kennedy (director of the Craighead Institute) introduced us to the PATH tool (invented by Jack Pearpoint, Marsha Forrest and John O'Brien) - PATH stands for planning alternative tomorrows with hope and you can find out more about it here.
What I liked about it is how collaborative and colourful the approach was, lots of really good idealistic energy was generated by concentrating first of all on the vision and then working backwards from there to achievable, realistic goals and priorities. All this was mapped out in front of us in a very transparent and artistic process and we ended by signing up if we were able to commit to doing something to realise the plan.
The issue we concentrated on was water. In particular the UN Water decade and how we can try to mobilise our congregations, churches and ourselves to get more involved in the global campaign for water justice. Of course it gave me the perfect opportunity to talk about the Ecumenical Water Network and get generally rather over excited about water. Anyway World Water Day is on March 22nd - what are you planning to do to mark the day this year? Meanwhile the Ecumenical Water Network is intending to do seven weeks for water again this Lent so watch out for that at the end of the month.
So it all goes to show, strategic planning isn't boring at all, actually it can be a great tool for advocacy!