On Wednesday 20th January, JCI Malta launched its 2021 Calendar of Initiatives through a Virtual Premiere on Facebook.
What is usually an in-person networking event that marks the start of the calendar year of events for the organisation had to move online due to Covid-19. All the JCI Malta 2021 board members were interviewed in safe settings by JCI Malta Senator Annalisa Schembri as they explained their plans and ideas for the upcoming year.
Nicole Borg, JCI Malta President 2021, explained the theme for the year ‘Leaders for Change’: “COVID made us realise how important agility and adaptability are, and these are essential traits in leaders; so, we want to ensure that our members gain skills to prepare themselves better for circumstances of change and growth. Moreover, the theme fits with the international initiative, JCI Rise, and what JCI wants to achieve globally.”
She said that membership growth is a priority to ensure the continuity of the organisation, and is planning on setting up a new local organisation, JCI Gozo. “We want to be accessible to young people in Gozo who want to grow and develop while living there, and not have to move to Malta to have these opportunities, as well as the several freelancers (both Maltese and non-Maltese) who reside in Gozo and who find it to be their perfect workplace where they can invest time and effort into setting up their own business.”
The three local organisation presidents explained their plans for the upcoming year, with Mel McElhatton who heads the Wignacourt local organisation that deals with civic responsibility, saying that they intend to focus on inclusivity in NGOs for people with disabilities. The first step has been taken by collaborating with CPRD and plans for organising a sign language course are in the pipeline.
La Valette president, Clayton Axisa, explained his vision for a validator and accelerator programme – keeping in line with the business vision of the local organisation. The programme will provide the opportunity for people to build start ups or social enterprises, therefore the focus will not be solely on business growth but will also take social impact into consideration. A cash grant and services in kind will be awarded to the winners allowing them to actually establish their idea.
Steph Dalli, president of the recently-renamed de Rohan local organisation, gave details about the upcoming inter-organisational debating competition, where several NGOs will be invited to form teams to represent them in a competition which will see the winning team representing JCI Malta in an international competition in 2022.
Director for Marketing, Johann Agius, spoke about one of the main events within JCI – the TOYP Awards, where the hard work of young leaders is recognised and awarded by JCI and the public. Winners of the local TOYP awards have the opportunity to receive an international TOYP award.
The entire 2021 team has been working hard since October 2020, said Jolanta Szubert, Director for Membership and Growth, as she explained what’s on offer for current and prospective JCI Malta members. A new membership package has been created that comprises a host of benefits including six free training sessions by UP Performance Coaching and a discount card. Furthermore, new members will be assigned a ‘buddy’ to ensure that they receive the best experience possible from their membership.
Continuing on the membership benefits theme, Fran Moisa, Vice-President for Partnerships and Training, disclosed the ‘Member of the Month’ plan, whereby a member will be recognised for their work and dedication towards the organisation and given the spotlight on JCI Malta’s social media channels. She also spoke about a JCI accredited course, JCI Facilitator, which is planned for September where members can learn about how to deliver training sessions.
Lara Attard and Daniele Gafa`, who form the administration arm of the board, as Secretary General and Treasurer respectively, also mentioned the importance of JCI Malta’s members and the projects that they run, which will be acknowledged during the JCI Malta Gala and Awards Night – a tradition that began in 2020.
Deputy President, Giselle Borg Olivier, spoke about her two main projects for the upcoming year, namely the hefty ‘Positive Politics’ project which seeks to bring out the positive side of leadership in the political sphere, and the JCI Malta Senator Programme, which aims to acknowledge and promote the work and skills of JCI Malta Senators in an effort to include them in the organisation’s current initiatives.
Immediate Past President, Markus Behman, who this year forms part of the international JCI European Development Council, talked about the new online platform, jci.digital, that was created by JCI Malta and that will offer online courses to members, both locally and internationally.