We have spent together three great years with Veronika Nordhus, Jeroen Decorte and Thibault Duisit as our European Team members and we cannot wait for the many years we will spend together as friends. This year, their mandates of three years finished but what they leave behind will always give us inspiration and guide us through the good but also difficult times of our network.
Back in 2014, when they started their mandates, little did they know what a challenge it was to be part of the European Team of MIJARC Europe. New strategic objectives had been set, donors were changing their financing systems, some of our member organisations were struggling to survive and new staff had to be employed, trained and supported. On top of that, MIJARC Europe was also involved in a heated debate about its core values, what they meant for old member and for new ones and what steps there were to take in order to expand our network and reach more young people from rural areas. Nobody had prepared them for this and during the transition meeting with the old team it was as if they had to run the marathon, trying to collect as much information as possible without having any time to let it sink in and breathe. But somehow they managed, and they did not just manage, they did a great job and left behind a more focused, organised and stable organisation with clearer procedures, guidelines and plans.
We are thankful for all their contribution, for the many sleepless nights, busy weekends, late Skype calls, burdening problems that had to be solved, for the emotions we all shared together, the hugs, the tears, the smiles, the sighs of relief at the end of stressful events and the cheers of joy whenever our applications got approved.
Dear Veronika, Jeroen and Thibault you were and will be an inspiration for MIJARC Europe. Thank you for remaining professional yet human through stressful times and for staying level headed and focused through those numerous joyous times!