RCM/AGM 2024 focus on education as the key for social inclusion

14 March 2024|JRS Europe

Related: JRS Europe

JRS Europe held its Regional Coordination Meeting and Annual General Meeting in Bucharest focused on “Social Inclusion: An Educational Approach”. Gathered in the Regina Carmelului convent, representatives from the 23 country offices, the regional office, and the international office discussed updates on the ongoing projects as well as brainstormed possible new endeavours.

The meetings also provided the opportunity to build up capacities in the team by sharing knowledge and best practices through workshops on supporting education for refugees, building stronger NGOs for times of crisis and navigating the news & digital landscape.

Alberto Ares Mateos SJ, regional director of JRS Europe, highlighted: “JRS tries to come together every year to grow in this spirit of being a family and to answer together to the new opportunities and challenges. We also want to say thank you to all of our teams because all together, we are here to keep hope alive”.

While the Regional Coordination Meeting brought together directors and country managers to discuss high level strategy, the Annual General Meeting allowed JRS workers of all seniority to exchange ideas and experiences. Beyond capacity building, this annual exercise also helps keep hope alive within the network when dealing in challenging contexts and continue with our mission.

Bianca Albu, from the JRS Romania office, explained: “The most important lesson for me is that we are a strong network and that we share a common feeling of brotherhood. We are accomplishing our mission in different ways but always having in mind that we serve refugees and that we accomplish day by day the will of God”.

Throughout the meeting, there were discussions on the role of the mission of JRS Europe within the broader family of JRS and the Society of Jesus. Dalibord SJ, President of the Jesuit Conference of European Provincials, present at the meeting underlined: “JRS is for us not any organization but a network and a community. A network because it connects European Jesuit provinces. And a Community because these are people who are motivated by the desire to those who are in need”.

Meanwhile, Nacho Eguizabal SJ, deputy director of JRS international, expressed: “I have witnessed how lively and creative the region is becoming being able to respond to a crisis like the war in Ukraine and, at the same time being very active in the preparation of the European Elections.”

With the hope replenished and new ideas brewing, each colleague returned to their office with renewed energies to continue working towards a Europe where human rights, protection, hospitality, integration, and reconciliation all have a place to flourish within a larger vision for inclusive and welcoming societies.