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2017 EASPD Conference presentation in Montenegro - report

Dr. Annick Janson, co-creator of the Now and Next program presented at the Flourishing Lives: Supportive Communities and Sustainable Development conference. For more information about this presentation go to 2017 EASPD Montenegro Conference

1. The value of our relationship with EASPD

Reconnecting with past EASPD President (Franz Wolmayr) who I met at previous EASPD conferences I was invited to as well as Secretary General (Luke Zelderloo) I was reminded of the power of number. James Crowe, EASPD President speaks on behalf of about 15,000 service providers across Europe. I was also introduced to other executive members as well as the administrators and conference organizers. The Now and Next approach was saluted and got mentioned during the conference at multiple occasions. I am looking forward to building on our existing connections. 

2. Our first opportunities

a. Finland: we agreed to explore future opportunities, including an invitation for their 2018 peer conference, which we could plan with some training... Kirsi Konola who is also on the EASPD Board and Jyrki Pinomaa (President of Inclusion Finland and 2018 President of Inclusion Europe) are colleagues of Simon Duffy and they have already tweeted to each other that this was a meeting of minds. Jyrki is the father of two young adults with disability.

b. France: Bernadette Grosyeux also a member of the EASPD executive is interested in collaborating on a European project proposal. There is also the possibility of an invitation to present at a Paris 2018 social change conference – where Now and Next would have an important message to disseminate. 

3. Early intervention

a. The EASPD Early Intervention Standing Committee organised for a shared lunch with me during the conference. I have made contact with its head and will be sure to be kept in the loop with their projects. Now and Next is streets ahead of what they have accomplished till now. I have organised an Early Intervention email list for us to stay in touch with a group photo we took at the lunch.

b. EURLYAID [European ECIA] President Ana Maria Serrano is interested in the idea. She is also an organizer for the 2019 Sydney ISEI World congress so we will most likely meet again then.

c. Jean Judes, GM, Beit Issie Shapiro GM is interested in exploring further collaboration. We had multiple talks during the conference and there are numerous connection points between our approaches.

​d. European countries from the ex-Eastern block receive different funding allocations from their government, so some will be looking to apply for further funding to work with Now and Next.

These are exciting opportunities, which are staggered in time from next year. We have met people inspired by our philosophy!