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Off to Uganda!

Monday, April 13, 2009 05:09 PM

Over the past year or two, I’ve intermittently talked with a close friend of mine who is a missionary with his wife in Hungary about the possibility of going to Budapest to do website development for their missionary base. A couple weeks ago I was put in contact with the lady who is in charge of the communications for the Youth With A Mission (the organization they work with) Central European office. Apparently, YWAM CE would like to do a communications/media/tech workshop there eventually. I was very excited to hear about this as it would fit in so well with our previous ideas. But during our conversation I was told about a global YWAM communication conference happening in Uganda. This would give me the over-arching vision to help me understand the situation of YWAM communications. So two weeks later I decided to go, and two weeks from now I will arrive!

So what is this all about? Let me explain a bit more about the conference.

The conference is called CRIT - Communication, Research, Information, and Technology. It was initiated five years ago in an effort to repair and invigorate YWAM’s failing communication, both internally base to base and externally to the rest of the world. Through this YWAM’s relational ties between bases, churches, and “outside” people and organizations will become stronger. On the website it is called a “consultation” not conference because of its interactivity between attendees. I gather it is a time to strategize various facets of communication for the organization.

Though I work with YWAM often, I do not consider myself a member of the organization. I am not a “YWAMer” (that is not to say I have something against that, the organization and people in it are fantastic. It’s just not who I am). So why am I going? I have been asked to come to CRIT as someone who is outside the bubble and active in my industry. Because of the format of the conference, there will be many opportunities to share amongst members. I am hoping my expertise in web development will be useful and helpful to YWAM. So I consider this a business trip (would not have ever expected say, “I’m going to Uganda on business” before now). I am one of the “outside professionals” joining their team to brainstorm, advise, and encourage.

This kind of work is where I want to direct my skills and talents. The reason I moved back from New Zealand was so I could begin to focus more on using my job skills to help develop and train non-profit organizations and the like in website development and technology. Of course I do “normal” paying work for businesses too. But those who work to change the world, that’s who I aim to help; to bring up to speed with communications technology. CRIT is the perfect opportunity to step into that - the contacts I will make and the viewpoint it will give me I expect to be very valuable for the future. From here, and with other options coming into view, who knows where this will take me. It is a prospect I am very excited about!


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