Minutes: Advisory Board Meeting March 28, 2018

These minutes have been approved by the Executive Board

Attendees: Martha Canning, Christine Rigby-Hall, Traci Hortinela, Rhonda Jimenez, Mary Beth Holland, Meg Brew, Beth Massa, Lauren Mescon, Audrey Mezas, Lisa Janisch, Christine Collins, Kristin DeLong, Beth van Amerongen, Helene Garofalo, Danielle Tomich

President Martha Canning called the meeting to order at 10:15 a.m.

FAWCO Interim Meeting - Martha shared that Lauren Mescon won a well-deserved FAWCO award. AWCA is the top donor to the Target Project. We now have Diamond Donor status!

Scholarship - Beth Massa reported that she has not yet received applications for the scholarships. It was discussed that it is normal for the applicants to wait until the last minute. It was discussed that the scholarship is merit-based, however, if minimum academic requirements are not met, applicants are not eligible. The academic requirements were discussed with respect to the different grading systems at schools. Members are encouraged to submit proposals for the description of the requirements. We need to be sure we continue to promote it. Beth Massa will send Beth van Amerongen the details for a club-wide email.

Youth Program - Rhonda Jimenez shared that our efforts to have business/professional internships are not going as well as she had hoped. As it is pursued further with the companies it becomes evident that it can be more work for the companies and not worth the benefit of having a student help out. One issue is that the program needs to be fluid; set dates don’t work well for the variety of schedules our families have. Furthermore, ISA students don’t get time off for internships so it has to be during the school breaks only, which presents a problem. Dutch schools and the British school give students a week off to be an intern. Rhonda is going to investigate some ideas presented and will also reassess the program to determine if it is worth continuing to pursue.

Amsterdam Activities - Lisa Janisch shared that things are going well as Amsterdam Rep, although she misses her “sidekick” Catherine. Lisa is willing to do the job one more year (bringing it to a total of 10 years as Amsterdam Rep!), however, we need to find Lisa a co-rep for the coming year. It was discussed that some of the events have gone by the wayside (such as the Coffees in the City or the Walking Group) but many people are planning individual activities.

Excursions - Christine Collins reported that there have been excursions every month and they have been extremely well-attended. The only hiccup was the Coffeeshop tour which generated a high amount of interest, but the tour operator canceled. If anyone knows of a possibility for a coffeeshop tour, please let Christine or Rhonda know. Beth van Amerongen will be taking on excursions for next year and will have a committee. It was discussed that in the coming year we will increase the number of excursions and will vary the demographics, as well as the cost to be sure all members have some excursions which interest them and meet their budget requirements. It was suggested that we consider an excursion to Edinburgh next year during the same weekend of the FAWCO Interim Meeting there.

Art on the Move - Mary Beth reported it has been a great year for AOTM and reviewed the year activities. The Anne Frank neighborhood tour with Lorraine van Nes’ husband was especially good and will possibly be repeated this coming year. Louise Hooley (in Haarlem) is a co-chair and she has coordinated a couple of tours this year. Mary Beth shared some of her thoughts for the remainder of the year. Mary Beth is always open to assistance on AOTM.

Cooking Club - Mary Beth took over the chairing of Cooking Club midyear. Last month it was held in Haarlem which was very well received. It was discussed we should consider doing a cooking club in ’t Gooi as well. It was mentioned that you do not have to have a large kitchen and that it is okay if you have to limit the number of attendees.

Haarlem Activities - Meg Brew reported for Jennifer van Lent. Upcoming events include an Easter egg hunt and a house tour. The end-of-year party will be pirate-themed and it is going to be combined with the Amsterdam end-of-year event. June 23 is being considered. The monthly coffees seem to vary a great deal in attendance. It was mentioned that Jennifer did a great job of as Haarlem Rep this year, but she will be stepping down this year to take on the position of At Night the coming year.

Publicity - It was discussed that there are some new international schools opening both in Haarlem and Amsterdam. Audrey will reach out to our PR Rep, Phyllis Larkin to be sure she is aware of these schools.

’t Gooi - Helene Garofalo shared the variety of activities happening in ’t Gooi, such as Crafts, Ladies’ Night Out and Wine Tasting, all advertised on the ’t Gooi Facebook page. This month they are having a dinner at a soup restaurant, which was advertised on the club-wide page to encourage others to attend. They will be having an end of year BBQ, most likely on the June 9.

Meet the Newcomers - Kristin DeLong has been hosting all coffees this year in her home. Vera Heijligers will be organizing the coffees next year. Cinda Bross and Lynne Tomlinson arranged lunches this year and will not be continuing. We will need to fill this position for next year. It was discussed there are people still confused about who is invited and how many times they can attend, despite the “Meet the Newcomers” title. Diane has secured hosts for all remaining months. There were many cancelations in February which was disappointing. She is having issues acquiring newcomers’ emails and getting them to attend. It was discussed that we should consider having buddies for the newcomers. Ideas for recruiting members was also discussed.

Dining Divas - Traci Hortinela and Elizabeth Gray have planned five so far this year. Several were near Central Station. There are typically around 10 members present, although some have had as many as 20 attendees. There is not one this month because of spring vacations. The next one is at the Amsterdam Boat House on May 24.

FAWCO - Lauren Mescon congratulated the entire club for being “rock stars” at the FAWCO Interim Meeting! Safe Spaces was submitted for a developmental award by AWCA member Sherrie Zwail and received it! Many other clubs were intrigued by “Share Your Gifts for Good” and our charity gala, and regularly asked how we did it. The goal for the Target Project was $125,000. FAWCO has nearly met their goal already with AWCA contributing ~$30,000. Lauren plans to use the next few months to be sure and thank our members for making us a “FAWCO club.” Lauren discussed Nacht van de Vluchteling (Night of the Refugee) and shared that our club has a team. She encourages all members to sign up. Lauren mentioned that club members who take a course can apply for FAWCO educational awards. She learned tips at FAWCO about how to apply for the awards and plans to share them with the club. Individual clubs can sponsor an education award and or developmental grant. Lauren suggested our club consider doing one with AWC The Hague.

Tulip Talk - Danielle Tomich hopes everyone is opening Tulip Talk and reading it. It is constantly evolving and she is considering moving the non-static items to a page on the AWCA website, so when events are changed, Tulip Talk will reflect that. The blog has been launched and is accessed on the external AWCA website. It is for promoting the club and a sharing platform for members. The differences between the blog, Tulip Talk and Facebook posts were discussed.

Book Club - Danielle shared that Book Club was so popular and had a waiting list, so a new evening one was formed and the new one is now full. It was mentioned that the AWCA could probably handle another book club if we have a member willing to form it.

The meeting was adjourned at 2:00 p.m.