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Society of St. Vincent DePaul May 9 th 2009. THE VINCENTIAN FAMILY AND SYSTEMIC CHANGE. The Commission to Promote Systemic Change. To study available material concerning systemic change To discuss our own involvement in Systemic Change

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Society of St. Vincent DePaul May 9 th 2009

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    1. Society of St. Vincent DePaul May 9th 2009 THE VINCENTIAN FAMILY AND SYSTEMIC CHANGE

    2. The Commission to Promote Systemic Change • To study available material concerning systemic change • To discuss our own involvement inSystemic Change • To formulate a series of “effective strategies” • flowing from the gospels and from our Vincentian tradition • To propose how the effective strategies might be best disseminated • among the members of the Vincentian Family throughout the world

    3. Our Global Family Story: think globally……. Vincentianscome from ………. Vincentiansare united ……….. Vincentianswitness …………... Vincentianscollaborate……….. Vincentianssee…………………

    4. Vincent’s Way think systemically……. “Systemic Change” is a contemporary phrase. Yet essentially Vincentian The poor live within social systems More than providing relief, important though that is.

    5. A System Asystemis a perceived whole whose elements ‘hang together’ because they continually affect each other over time and operate toward a common purpose.

    6. Social Systems Social and political institutions are : • context • meant toprovide the resources people need to survive • meant to ensure thatbasic human needs are met. • often exclusive, unequal and entrapping

    7. Systemic Thinking A system is composed of parts, but you cannot understand a system by looking only at its individual parts. You need to work with the whole of a system, even as you work with individual parts or isolated problems.

    8. Systemic Thinking “If you want to change individual or local behaviours, or if you want to resolve an issue, you have to tune into the system-wide influences on the behaviour or the issue. You have to use what is going on in the whole system to understand individual behaviour, and you have to inquire into individual behaviour to learn about the whole. “

    9. Keywords Root causes Transformation Systems

    10. Keywords They commit themselves to work for social transformation to change the unjust structures that cause poverty (DC constitution)

    11. Act locally…. Change is Possible Hope is kindled

    12. Act locally… Change is Possible Hope is kindled Nearer to home : The Passage

    13. Act locally…. Change is Possible Hope is kindled Each of us holds a piece of the jigsaw in ministry Each of us sheds a little light through it Each of us holds hope in our hands Each of us can act for change

    14. Act Locally: Reflect Start with your own experience Who do you walk with? What to you see? What are you called to do? What is the challenge? What are systems that surround your people? What causes the poverty? What will transform it and the lives of the people? And what of the systems we are as individuals, local communities, a conference, nationally?

    15. Nearer to home: The Jigsaw Parish ministry; young parents Asylum seekers and refugees People in prison People who have a learning disability Migrants Spiritual and pastoral care Young people Older people Political lobbying against unjust structures Sisters and environmental awarenesscountries Homeless people Unemployed

    16. Act locally Change is Possible Define a local and specific need - the issue Start to respond in a modest but quality way - our hope What systems, or parts of a system, are at work in this issue? Build awareness Enlist and empower an organised, multi-faceted response

    17. It’s been there all the time! Vincent at Chatillon The SVP today

    18. What do we bring to the table as Vincentians? • Vincent de Paul and Louise de Marillac were leaders of change: • sense of urgency • guiding teams. • a transforming vision • simple and heartfelt message • empowered others to act • models of servant leadership A simple tool for us all to follow

    19. How? Vincentian Strategies For Systemic Change 1. Having a holistic vision 2. Placing particular emphasis on self-help and self- sustaining programs 3. Constructing a shared vision with diverse stakeholders: 4.Involving the poor themselves

    20. Have we got a vision for our small piece of the globe? Let’s go for it!

    21. Conclusion He saw urgent needs and envisioned creative solutions. With simplicity and determination, he took the initiative to act on his vision. He gathered resources and built organisations to protect the vision. Once begun, Vincent provided the energy needed to sustain the vision and overcome obstacles and resistances; and year after year this remarkable man kept improving and strengthening the work God gave him to do. And, systems were created and changed; and peoples’ lives were better.