Autumn Harvest

Michael J. Readinger

As summer slowly gives way to autumn (it’s in the 90s on October 1!), the CHHSM Board and staff are harvesting much of the work that has been in process for the last several months. It has been a busy and exciting season of planting and tending to the fruits of our labors.

First and foremost, many of you have received the Member Engagement Survey — nearly 200 responses are currently being collated so that we can see what we are doing well. Equally as important, we hope to learn what we can work harder on in order to increase member satisfaction and provide additional value. Second, Elyse has joined George, Paula and me as a full-time member of the team. Look for a significant increase in some focused meetings and engagement and mobilization of our Board committees, task forces and other groups as the staff reaches full capacity. Third, the staff and Board of Directors are preparing to be together in November for our last board meeting of 2019. We will approve the budget, focus on how we work best as a team and engage each other in educational and generative sessions in addition to the fiduciary duties we need to complete.

And, this is where we can use your help. Please consider stepping up to the following calls for action:

  • Save the date for the 2020 Annual Gathering in Memphis next March. Registration will open in mid-December 2019.
  • Send us a proposal for a workshop at the 2020 Annual Gathering.
  • Plan for some extra time in Memphis so you can embrace the rich culture present there and participate in some of the pre-conference activities we have scheduled on Monday, March 2, and the morning of Tuesday, March 3.
  • Consider joining a committee of the Board of Directors. This volunteer committee work is an important step along the path to joining the Board in the future. Read about Board committees and download an application form.

We will be sending our annual request for member updates soon. This process is so much more than a method for assessing dues for 2020. We use this data to express the service that you, our membership, provide to the UCC, Wider Church and the world. The volunteer hours, charitable care dollars, number of clients you care for and all the other data fields we ask you to complete are important pieces of information for our work as the UCC’s health and human service ministry. Please take the time to carefully provide all the information you can. It really makes a difference in how we work together to create a just, caring and compassionate world.

In early 2020, we will open enrollment for the Nollau Leadership Institute Class of 2020-2021. We really hope you will explore this opportunity and send one or two members of your team to participate in this transformational program. It will change that individual’s understanding of vocation and call, serving leadership, and their purpose in being a part of the mission, vision and values of your organization.

So, as you can see, we need your assistance to accomplish all that we are called to do on behalf of our membership. We cannot do this important work alone, and that is why this piece is more “nuts-and-bolts” than most of my previous columns. If we are able to join together in the weeks ahead to “harvest” all of these resources that we have worked so diligently to provide, then surely we will move into the new year with a wealth of ideas, skills, direction and commitment to the work of preparing for the next “growing” season as we fully implement the CHHSM strategic plan.

Thank you in advance for your commitment and support.

Peace and Blessings,

Mike and the CHHSM Family

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