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Building Bridges Session

28 December 2012

buildingbridges2012_3This year’s Building Bridges leadership session took place on December 28th at Scarborough Gurdwara and focused on structural changes to the Foundation, but also discussed leadership styles, team dynamics, individual thought processes, and the organization’s roots. The Council started the session with a short discussion on the choices we make. Afterward, a new structure for the Foundation was proposed and adopted. Attendees were separated into four groups: activities, planning, administration and programs. Currently, the Board is not able to provide mentorship as they are too busy organizing events and this hinders growth. In this structure, each team will take responsibility for different aspects of the Foundation: activities will focus on participation and volunteer base growth; planning will organize events; programs will sustain child sponsorship, EAP and CYDE; and administration will work on keeping records and external communications. The hope is that this will increase efficiency and encourage more ownership of the Foundation.

After the break, different leadership styles were discussed along with the benefits and drawbacks of each and attendees had a chance to reflect. Following the discussion, the four teams competed in a tower-building exercise with straws and paperclips. Upon completion, each group went over team dynamics and how it impacted their success or failure. The session then transitioned into a reflective activity about hemispheric dominance where each individual completed a test to see which side of their brain was dominant and learned about how this impacts the way in which they work. Finally, the group went back to our roots to discuss the vision and the mission of the Foundation followed by a reflection on the session. Overall, it was a success as the new structure provides potential for improvement and the 42 attendees learned a lot and enjoyed themselves.