I’ve been attending the Families in Global Transition conference for 15 years now and have always loved it. Whereas many conferences are filled with folk who want to promote themselves, this one is attended by people who want to share what they know with others. This is where people go who really care. This is where the researchers go, the game-changers, the educators, the psychologists and the trainers. It’s a non-profit organisation and as such can always benefit from both more marketing and more money.
As a journalist I have long-believed that attending a conference in a field you find fascinating will provide more benefits than you can believe:
FIGT has never disappointed and that is why so many people return to it again and again. I’ve had my fair share of lucky breaks and that is why I love to mentor new writers and help them to get their own freelance writing career off the ground. I also like to champion the causes that are close to my heart.
I wanted to recruit new writers and train them. Then I wanted to ask them to cover the FIGT conference. In this way FIGT gets much needed publicity and the new writers get to experience firsthand how incredibly valuable a conference can be.
And so, in late 2013 I put out a plea for applications for what was named the Parfitt Pascoe Writing Residency. In 2014 Australian Sue Mannering, Americans Dounia Bertuccelli and Justine Ickes and Italian Cristina Bertarelli made their way to the conference in Washington, DC, and wrote about everything that happened there. This material became more than 50 blogs and articles that were circulated on social media and used on the FIGT website. The lucky four were also joined by four other writers who were keen to be involved and so Terry Anne Wilson, Alice Wu, Becky Matchullis and Nikki Kazimova joined the team.
By June all the pieces were submitted and now Dounia and Sue stepped up to the plate collating and editing the material. It was no small task and it took until October and another round of edits until the material was ready to go to the designer just before Christmas. Last week we went to press and Insights and Interviews from the 2014 Families in Global Transition Conference: The Global Family Redefined was published in print and e-book format and is now available. Everyone involved gave their time for free and while I sponsored the majority of the costs the four Parfitt Pascoe Writing Residents, FIGT and the designer will all receive ongoing royalties.
I think we can call this a success story. In fact it is win-win for many people involved:
I am delighted to announce that the PPWR is now a permanent fixture at FIGT and next week Taylor Murray is heading to Washington from Japan, Lauren Power from Singapore and Lauren Owen and Beth Hoban are travelling from the US.
If you would like to be considered for next year’s scholarships pleased keep your eye on this website and prepare to submit your application in the autumn.
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