World Student Christian Federation - Asia-Pacific Region (WSCF-AP)
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Regional Programme

SCM General Secretaries
and National Coordinators Meet in Singapore

From L-R: Freddy Pandiangan, GMKI; Antonio da Silva, TL SCM; Tharaka, SL SCM; Im Thanno, CSCM; Roger Gaikwad; Kim Oh Sung, KSCF
From L-R: Freddy Pandiangan, GMKI; Antonio da Silva,
TL SCM; Tharaka, SL SCM; Im Thanno, CSCM;
Roger Gaikwad; Kim Oh Sung, KSCF

November 13-17, 2005
Singapore

The 3rd General Secretaries/National Coordinators' Meeting was held in Singapore on 13-17 November 2005. 15 General Secretaries and National Coordinators from the Asia-Pacific National Movements attended the meeting. They were: Bronwyn Hatwell from Australia, Stuart Bradshaw from Aoteroa/New Zealand, Prince Sumon Mojumdar from Bangladesh, Im Thano from Cambodia, Angie Lee from Hong Kong, Samuel Jayakumar from India, Freddy Pandiangan from Indonesia, Yutaka Kusajima from Japan, Kim Oh-sung from Korea, Saw Shwe Lin from Myanmar, Ma. Cristina Guevarra from Philippines, Tharaka Muthuthanthri from Sri Lanka, Rev. Tan Ho-Tek from Taiwan, Thon Areeyat from Thailand, Antonio da Silva from Timor Leste. WSCF AP Chairerson, Dr. Roger Gaikwad, WSCF AP ExCo member Nina Nayoan and WSCF Inter-Regional Secretary General Michael Wallace also attended this meeting.

The main objectives of this meeting are:

The main objectives of this meeting were: to draw lessons and learn from the experiences, successes, strengths and areas of improvement of the work of the national movements in the last three years; Identify effective strategies and direction for WSCF AP's movement building work. Identify the critical issues, concerns and themes relevant to the students and youth today, and recommend strategies and actions for program planning at the national, regional and global levels; Create venue for the general secretaries and coordinators to share their experience in general staff work, leadership, management, project and activities implementations and identify areas of cooperation and skills enhancement for further development.

General Secretaries/National Coordinators’ MeetingThe meeting started with an opening that includes a theological reflection by WSCF AP Chairperson, Dr. Roger Gaikwad. Dr. Gaikwad reflects on Daniel 1:1-7 that spoke on the roles and responsibilities of young people who are caught between serving the people's needs and serving the needs of the power structures that exploit and oppress the people. Many young people are walking on a thin line on this dilemma as they are faced with the convenience of blissful ignorance or the constant struggle of personal conscientization. The role of the SCM, that of being relevant and cultivating, is a challenge in this present era as the age of globalisation becomes apparent in causing a divide amongst young people. It is thus a continuous challenge for SCM in its students' ministry in this present time.

The meeting then was followed by an introduction of WSCF from Michael Wallace who enlightens the delegates with the latest development in the Inter-Regional Office (IRO). The Inter-Regional programme in 2006 will focus on the theme "Empire" and Michael uses this opportunity to seek comments and suggestions on the programme planning. Two bible studies were shared by Roger and Nina, WSCF AP ExCo member. Roger shared on the need to go beyond charity work which only serves as a transition to the action work done to achieve social justice and it is SCM's challenge to go beyond charitable means. Nina shared on the nameless Gentile woman who requested Jesus' help to cure her sick daughter, referring to the many oppressions that women experience in this world.

There were 3 main workshops that are the highlights of this meeting, and the workshops are:

  1. Movement Building which aims to deliberate on student recruitment
  2. Formation Programmes which aim to evaluate the effectiveness of SCM programmes and activities for the students
  3. SCM Theology and Spirituality which aims to concretise the SCM's articulation of the theology/theologies that have been the stalwart of the SCM Praxis.

To enable wider participation and deeper discussions, the delegates were divided into small groups so that they could use more time on the deliberations.

There is a presentation from each small group thereafter. The issues and areas of concern the regional office is aiming to raise are:

  1. How effective are the Formation Programs of the SCMs Today?
  2. Questions on How to bring more students in the SCMs? How to promote the SCMs among the students?
  3. The Theology and Spirituality of the SCMs and WSCF?
  4. How do we develop a relationship with Evangelical Groups in our student ministry both in the regional and national?
  5. Inputs/Orientation on WSCF IRO and WSCF AP programs

Special time was allocated to new movements such as Cambodia and Timor Leste to share their stories and experiences in formation of the movement. This was a good opportunity for the new SCMs to present their struggles and achievements so that established movements could consider ways of support to them.