On behalf of the Commonwealth Foundation I want to take a moment to extend good wishes to our supporters during this season of goodwill to all.
It has been an important year for the Foundation – marking the successful conclusion of one Strategic Plan and the beginning of a new cycle. This is a time to thank our member states for their continuing support for our work. Their approval of the new Strategic Plan indicated trust and confidence in the organisation.
That relationship is built on our achievements, which over the past year has seen us: manage 38 continuing grant funded initiatives and approve a further 14 projects in June; receive more than 5,200 entries for the Commonwealth Short Story Prize; and welcome a combined following of 19,000 for our Foundation and Commonwealth Writer’s Twitter feeds.
Behind the numbers are the stories of the partnerships that we have continued to nurture with civic voices across the Commonwealth. Voices like those of young people in Southern Africa, working together to shape employment policy on the region through the Southern Africa Alliance on Youth Employment. Voices like those of the six filmmakers from the Pacific Islands who saw their ideas go from script to screen at the Hawaii International Film Festival this year.
We look forward to 2018 and the opportunity provided by the Commonwealth People’s Forum, which will take place in April here in London. The Forum is the single largest gathering of civic voices from across the Commonwealth. It will bring more than 300 people together including advocates, writers, performers, film-makers and other catalysts for social change. They’ll be making the connections between inclusive governance and a contemporary Commonwealth. You’ll see that registration is open now.
A final word then to thank you for your continuing support for the Commonwealth Foundation. It’s keenly appreciated by staff and we look forward to working with you in the new year.
Vijay Krishnarayan is Director-General of the Commonwealth Foundation. Image Credit: John Stratford Flickr CC.