The magic of Convergence 3.0
"This has been something very special," said Cathy Brothers from Capacity Canada, and a member of the Social Prosperity Wood Buffalo steering committee.
"I loved the breakout workshops," said Michele Taylor from the Fort McMurray Family Crisis Society.
Credit for the third iteration of ConvergenceYMM goes to an engaged and hard-working volunteer committee, a great advisory committee, and Ifeatu Efu, who led the effort in her role as project manager with Social Prosperity Wood Buffalo. Everyone brought their A-game and delivered an outstanding experience, enhanced by our gregarious and inspiring emcee, Jason Beck, Executive Director of the Justin Slade Youth Foundation.
There seemed to be the right balance of plenary and breakout sessions, meaningful side activities (the WHAT YOU NEED-WHAT YOU CAN OFFER wall and the book giveaways), panel discussions and relevant keynotes. There was also additional magic in the room thanks to the creativity of our experience committee with the centre pieces and washroom accoutrements.
Social media "blew up", as my colleague and friend Kiran likes to say. It really did. The tweets, retweets and favourites were flowing from the opening ice breaker to the closing happy dance. The success of Convergence cannot be pinned on one or several people, a small group or a number of groups. The success Convergence was generated by every single person in the room. We truly are stronger together.
We'll have a more objective sense of how ConvergenceYMM was received by the delegates when they all return to their desks and fill out the online survey that has been sent to their inboxes. But there is no doubt in my mind that we're collectively heading in the right direction.
I really enjoyed tweeting and taking pictures, two things that come rather naturally to me. Here are a few of my favourite shots from two remarkable days.