From the Chair of the Board of Directors
  • 2013 – A time for planning our future
    Happy New Year to you all. How fast time flies – it is now six months since the 16th ICD in Sydney and what a wonderful congress it was.  It was a great pleasure to meet so many of you there and a very big thank you and congratulations to the Dietitians Association of Australia for hosting such a fantastic event.  It is now time to look forward to the 17th Congress in Granada.  It is also time for the work to start on the next four year cycle of the ICDA. The Board works to four year plans between our congresses.  We are now going to move towards writing a plan with strategic activities for the 2012-2016 period. The Board has already met this year and we are already starting to work on the plan, basing it upon those ideas and activities that you, the members, told us you wanted us to include. We expect to be able to post the new plan around mid-year so look out for it!
    Planning is important for many reasons – it frames the work we do, the way the money that member associations pay in fees is used and it has the potential to advance the profession.  The important part is that the plans are real and concrete, yet flexible to ensure that we can make the most of any opportunities that arise. Frank Ogden, the Canadian futurist, stated “my idea of long range planning is lunch” (Ogdenisms: the Frank Ogden Quote Book, 1994) suggesting that when things are rapidly changing it is important not to plan too far ahead. So the Board plans for longer term outcomes but reviews the plan each meeting, so that it remains relevant and that new issues are not missed.
    In this issue of the newsletter are summaries of the outcomes of the ICDA sponsored workshops at the ICD. The Board has grouped the ideas from these summaries under a number of headings to guide us in developing our plans – but the list is long indeed. The Board itself does not have the capacity in either time or ability to do all the things you want or implement all the ideas.  That is why we need help.  In 2010- 2012 we tried new systems to get help – through member associations taking on topics and tasks, supporting existing and known activities and by calling for individuals to help the Board directly on specific issues.  This was very successful, so we plan to continue doing this.  Please look out for calls for helpers and put your hand up if you can. There are many ways to help and the more helpers we have the easier the jobs become. Working for the international dietetics community brings its own rewards – new friends around the world and the knowledge that you have made a difference, so please consider this.
    As we look forward to the 2012-2016 period, this is an exciting and a great time to be a dietetics professional – the environmental issues and climate change have the capacity to put our knowledge and skills into real focus and the rise of chronic diseases is already impacting services we provide.  The ICDA has a critical role to play in the way these issues unfold for the profession globally.
    A really big welcome to new representatives from Turkey.  Mrs. Zehra Büyüktuncer DEMİREL and Dr. Dilek ONGAN have taken on international roles for the Turkish Dietetic Association.  Congratulations and well done.  We hope you find your role with ICDA rewarding.
    Sandra Capra
    Chair, Board of Directors, ICDA