On the 24th of June this year, we marked a very special occasion – the launch of our Strategic Plan entitled “Building on our Strengths”.
The event was held at the Care Centre and attended by local friends, donors, supporters and of course, our VIP’s – the community of Missionvale.
Our Strategic Plan addresses the issue of preserving and sustaining Missionvale Care Centre into the future, encompassing the values of respect, dignity and compassion that Sister Ethel has become synonymous with.
Sister Ethel beautifully and eloquently wrote the foreword:
“Dear friends – dear, dear friends
I owe you so much! And it’s time to tell you though I know you know. Where would I be now if it were not for your trust and love down 28 years?
Time! Yes it’s all we have – long or short – and how grateful I am to you for the time that we have spent together.
Down the years I have wondered what led me here, and every day brings its answer. Many of you reading this may ask “do you remember?” and again do you remember?
Yes, I remember so much and can relate many good and wonderous times, and sadly many experiences of destruction.
It has been a long journey on the dusty footpaths of Missionvale, one that started in 1988 with nothing but hope in my heart and a rucksack on my back, but along the way I have encountered humanity at its best.
The awesome welcome from the people of Missionvale and their acceptance of this ordinary girl from Lissycasey began and never ended. As we shared life together I was challenged to enter into their fears, illness, pain, hunger, loneliness, tears, despair, agony, forgiveness, joy, laughter, births and deaths, and I found myself crying out “Lord, what do you want me to do?”
The vision of Missionvale Care Centre as you know it today came through listening to the voices and foresight of the people and it was in a gathering under the tree that I asked them what we would call what we hoped would emerge and unequivocal they said “A Care Centre”. That gave birth to the organisation.
It was then that I turned to you the people of the greater Port Elizabeth, and afar, and your trust in me became the wind beneath my wings! How can I ever, ever tell you what it meant to me and how do I thank you?
Those who know me know that I enjoy telling stories (a trait I inherited from my father) and I could go on forever on the story of Missionvale. It’s like a tapestry! We have come so far together living in, and embracing the evolving future. You can proudly look back on the legacy you have created, but you are an integral part of the future to maintain it, and grow it into the future through the Strategic Plan. You may have paged through the document already and you will have seen that it has been well researched through discussions from stakeholders and key partners, both here and far away.
In today’s challenging economic environment longevity and sustainability is critical to the success of any organisation. Missionvale is no exception. As such in reading this document you will appreciate that hours of consultation, planning, passion and commitment has gone into this.
The struggle of the people of Missionvale has not ended, and therefore the execution of the bold objectives of this document will require all hands on deck.
I humbly appeal to you that we work together in sharing the new energy brought about by this plan in taking ownership of the tasks and work that still has to be done in serving the people of Missionvale as you did in the past. We can do it.
Once again I would like to thank each one of you from my heart’s core for all you mean to me and have done. To the Little Company of Mary who gave me the opportunity to live our charism as best I could – thank yo.
With open arms I love every one of you, and I ask God each day to bless you to journey’s end.”
It is my great privilege to share a copy of this plan with you all, and I hope that you will find something in it that will resonate with your own values of humanity.
We are so deeply grateful to you for the support we have received through the GlobalGiving platform, and hope that you will take comfort in knowing that any contributions made to our cause, are sustainable interventions directly impacting on the poorest of the poor.
We look forward to our continued relationship and so grateful again being the recipients of your generosity!