Every year AICCM National Council has a planning meeting to check we are on track with our strategic plan and decide our focus for the year ahead. Like last year, in 2021 we held our ‘face-to-face’ meeting over Zoom in a series of meetings spread out over a fortnight. (It seemed the safest bet back in January when travel interstate was still a much more uncertain prospect.) We had many excellent conversations and I’d like to thank everyone who put aside time in their day to contribute.
One of the highlights for me was the first meeting of our new Development Committee. I’d like to welcome Robyn Sloggett, Carolyn Murphy, Detlev Lueth, MaryJo Lelyveld, Jennifer O’Connell and Kasi Albert to the committee, along with current AICCM Executive members Grace Barrand (Vice President and Chair of the committee) and Libby Melzer (Treasurer), who generously shared their time, expertise and ideas.
Currently the AICCM relies heavily on membership fees to sustain itself, with additional income from advertisements, Bulletin copyright fees, and event registrations. Membership fees alone cannot sustain us.
The aim of the Development Committee is to identify financial and in-kind support for AICCM activities that contribute to the development of the profession, the capacity of its members and the preservation of cultural materials. We’ve already discussed a number of exciting possibilities; the hardest part might be deciding which idea to pursue first!
In the new (financial) year we plan to start another committee, for advocacy. This group will look for opportunities to both increase general awareness of conservation and advocate on issues that are important to us. It will build on our advocacy to date and incorporate advice received in recent professional development sessions organised for National Council—one given by government policy expert Andrew Jackson and another by journalist David Killick. Keep an eye out for expressions of interest to join, if this is something that takes your fancy.
One group that has done an enormous amount to raise our profile of late is the Preventive SIG, which has organised several excellent webinars as part of the Agents of Change series, which have proved to be enormously popular and have even raised our profile internationally. The Book and Paper SIG also organised a webinar with photographic expert Debra Hess Norris, which was similarly well attended. Michelle Berry (Secretariat), Lisa Mansfield (Events and SIG Coordinator), Zora Sanders (Communications Officer) and Paul Coleman (Web Editor) assisted the organising committees to help make these successful, and it is thanks to their efforts that you can find recorded versions of the webinars here. If you missed them live, make sure you check them out!
In closing I remind you that the end of the financial year is drawing near, a time when many people think about making tax-deductible donations. What better recipient of such donations than AICCM?! Even if you, yourself, are not in a position to donate, please consider sharing this link with your networks: https://aiccm.org.au/donate/. Or, if you’re not already a member, consider joining AICCM and help us to provide the framework and resources to support and promote Australian conservators and conservation: https://aiccm.org.au/membership/.
Best wishes for your end-of-financial-year endeavours!