This annual report comes out even as the newspapers are filled with bleak statistics indicating rising poverty rates, a struggling global economy, disasters, and a loss of hope about the future. These have had a great impact on the international development movement, especially putting pressure on sources of funding.
To us at VSO Bahaginan, this climate means two very important things. First, it means that our work is more crucial than ever as the ranks of people affected by poverty continues to grow. Second, it asks of us to become more innovative in our approaches and methods in order to address these realities.
It seems strange to start off with a bleak picture but the news is: It has been a good year for VSO Bahaginan.
We have taken to heart the call to step up our involvement at all levels, and for us in particular, this has meant subtle but nevertheless powerful changes in the way we work. We now are able to raise our public profile using our track record to back our advocacies. We ran our first campaign with 1GOAL:Education For All, a global campaign timed with the FIFA World Cup. We also successfully hosted our first parliamentarian volunteer to engage the public in our advocacy to value health workers.
As we enter the first year implementing People First, the new VSO strategy, we look ahead with anticipation and confidence. While there certainly will be challenges, we will meet them with courage, creativity and tenacity and remain optimistic that our vision of a fairer world without poverty is within reach.
Grace Aguiling-Dalisay, Ph.D
VSO Bahaginan Chair
VSO Bahaginan Executive Director