Welcome to 2012 everyone – and of course this is one of our big years, with the Congress coming up. How exciting!! Its held only once every 4 years so we are all excited about meeting you in person once again. Planning is well forward now. We hope you have seen the great program planned which is available on the website www.icd2012.com and are already planning your trip.
Also every four years is the chance for Directors to listen to you, the members of our member associations. And… this year, for the first time ever, the Board of Directors is presenting a series of interactive workshops on issues of interest to the international dietetics profession.
One of these workshops is on using “society” or the general community to help us advance nutrition issues and programs within countries. There are many instances of using voluntary organisations to undertake food and nutrition programs, of the power of the society generally to influence the political or social agenda of a nation and the role of non-government organisations in health services. Across the world many dietetic associations use the “civil society”, that is these other groups of volunteers, non-government organisations and groups, to help them deliver nutrition programs and to affect great change. They are a way of increasing our capacity to provide education, information and to create change through increasing awareness. To do that though, we must be clear what we want and how we can work with our general societies to make a difference. Sometimes it is not coordinated or is not planned.
We will be exploring this topic at one of our workshops. Look out for the workshops on the program and sign up for them if you can. We will be asking for members to give us advice about what you do now with regard to your harnessing of societal structures, what your policy and practices are, how you evaluate the programs, how you resource them. Do you have anything written or do partnerships and activities arise almost at random? Our aim is to learn from each other and to determine how we can all work together to support the strength we have in numbers to advance both the profession and the work of the profession.
This is just one of the Board topics we are offering. Others include practical issues around the IDNT, implementing evidence based practice, new models of practice, consideration of the development of minimum standards for dietetics education, exploring accreditation by ICDA, developing marketing plans and open conversations with Directors to help guide our planning for the period 2012-2016.
I look forward to seeing you all there.
Sandra Capra AM, PhD
Chair, Board of Directors, ICDA