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The formation program of the Province/Region should promote the training of scholastics and junior priests for development of benefactor relations and the administration of projects NC 391 §1; IAG [302,303]. Training should include: a) Spirituality of fundraising b) Relationship with benefactors c) Management of resources d) Skills in managing projects and reporting/accountability.

Quoted from a letter written by the former Superior General Adolfo Nicolas
Development work in the SJ is a service to the poor for their empowerment and freedom. Its missions accord high priority to the liberation and upliftment of the poor and marginalized sections of society through various of its Strategic Interventions which calls for greater management and resource mobilisation skills to be much more effective. One of the initiatives is to equip the Jesuits at the formation stage itself, exposing them to the changing context, orienting them on new development paradigms and facilitating them to acquire the required knowledge and skills for their future work.

In this context, a nine-day intensive summer course on 'Management of Development Programmes' was jointly organized by the Assistancy Development Office (ADO) and Secretariate for Jesuits in Social (JESA) and Patna Jesuits Society (PJS) from 22nd April to 30th April, 2018 at Atmadarshan in Patna. Eighteen participants hailing from seven different provinces took active part in the learning process. Two Scholastics from Kenya and East Timor along with four core staff from a few social action centres of Patna Province added to the flavor of the programme. The participants benefitted immensely from the programme.

The design and planning of the programme was made in such way that the trainees are imparted both theoretical and practical knowledge. Lok Manch Project implemented by JESA on right’s-based issues across 14-provinces was chosen for field exposure and practical training. Lok Manch project is a unique experiment with 100 CSOs from Jesuit Institutions, Church Organizations and Lay Collaborators having great expertise on collaboration and networking on a larger platform.

The programme was inaugurated and inspired by Fr. Robert Athikal, Founder and Director, Tarumitra on 22nd April. The Trainees got an opportunity to make a short visit to witness the pioneering work of Tarumitra on 23rd morning.

The following main subjects relevant to the development work were covered during the training:
  • Concept and Approaches to Development, Right’s Based Approach, SDGs
  • Introduction and components of Project Management
  • Project Proposal Writing
  • Problem Analysis, Baseline Study
  • Planning Methodology, Formulation of Goal, Objectives,
  • LFA-Outcomes, Outputs, Activities,
  • Costing and Budgeting
  • Monitoring and Evaluation, Development of Indicators
  • Documentation and Report Writing
The team of resource persons consisted of Mr. Manoj Pradhan, Senior Programme Manager at ADO, Siji, SJ, Coordinator-PDOs and Mr. Vijay Parmar, Senior consultatnt of JESA. After being introduced to the Lok Manch project, the trainees went for 3-days field visit in 5-teams to 5-partner organizations in Bihar which was very well coordinated by Anand, SJ the Zonal Coordinator of Lok Manch for Northern Zone. Based on reporting guidelines, the trainees made excellent presentations on PPT of their experience and learning. In that session, Mr. Elmar, Representative, MISEREOR gave his feedback and shared his learning who was on a visit to Bihar Lok Manch Programme.

At the end, there was an evaluation of the programme and feedback session. The program was meticulously planned, organized and facilitated Fr. Siji and his team who worked tirelessly to make the programme a great success. The Amtadarshan team provided excellent hospitality and conference facilities. XTTI and St. Michael’s communities invited us for special tea.

Overall it was a good initiative by the ADF and PCFs to equip the scholastics with the tools and techniques of project management. It is indeed a good initiative by the Assistancy keeping in mind the development work as a service to the people. The programme was concluded with a short Patna Dharshan and a visit to the Development office, patna and an agape at St.Xavier’s Provincial House. Jose Vadassery,SJ the Provincial of Patna gave away certificates of participation to all the participants.

- Reported by SCH.A. MICHAEL RAJA

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