We caught up with JCI Sheffield member Mark Smith (2015 Local JCI Sheffield President) to ask him about the history of the 5 year twinning agreement between JCI Mayo and JCI Sheffield.
Happy 5th anniversary!
It was five years ago, back in 2012 when the local Presidents of JCI Mayo in Ireland and JCI Sheffield in the UK signed their official twinning agreement. It was then I believe the slogan ‘twinning is winning’ was born which is now being used by other Chambers to promote their twinning relationships! Good to see that we are trend setters! On a serious note, the strong relationship which JCI Mayo and JCI Sheffield have built up over the last five years is seen as good practice and one which others want to strive to create in many other Chambers and countries.
What is twinning?
The JCI Twinning Program is a voluntary and reciprocal agreement between national organizations or local organizations in different countries, regions or cities.
The motivation to twin originates from the members in two national or local organizations who wish to establish a mutual understanding and friendship. The objective is to exchange personal visits, ideas, projects and culture. With modern communication and transportation systems, distance is no longer an obstacle
What sort of thing usually happens on twinning visits?
Every year since the twinning began, members of both Chambers have had the chance to take part in twinning visits – one to County Mayo and one to Sheffield and during each visit we always manage to cover all areas of opportunity with a spot of volunteering for community, some training, business and of course the social side all wrapped up in international!
I have had the pleasure of attending all twinning visit (2 a year) for the last 5 years. In that time we have had training on debating; event management; assessing risk; effective communications; networking; blogging; JCI Achieve course. We have volunteered for the MSPCA (Mayo’s equivalent of the RSPCA) walking dogs, cleaning and socialising kittens; marshalling at a triathlon; helped at an art gallery. In terms of team building exercises we have done paint balling; the great escape; assault courses; Go Ape; ‘Boda Borg’ (a bit ike the Crystal Maze); taken part in St Patricks Day celebration parades complete with homemade banners and much more!
Why do you think the Mayo/Sheffield twinning relationship has remained so strong over the last 5 years?
I think the main reasons are that
- everyone is so friendly which makes it easy to develop trusting relationships
- we have always organised two trips a year
- our members meet up each other at international conferences such as European Conference and World Congress
- we hold regular twinning conference calls to keep in touch
- team building and socials are key elements of our twinning visits which help develop strong relationships
- it provides members an international experience including those who may not be able to take part in the international conferences for whatever reason
What do other members think of the twinning relationship?
“The twinning between Mayo and Sheffield gets stronger and stronger each year. This weekend was absolutely fantastic, hanging out with our twins, learning, having fun, breaking boundaries with team events and a bit of food and drink. It was wonderful to have our twins over again and catchup and I’m looking forward to visiting Sheffield again later in the year” Adrian Corcoran 2017 National President JCI Ireland; 2014 Local President JCI Mayo
“Im very new to JCI but Im loving the many different aspects of it. My first time meeting the lads I was on their team building a robot to wage a war on our friends then last we drove blind around a track (We wont talk about the hot tub)..Where else would you get experiences and bonds formed like that. Invaluable memories un measureable support” Charlotte Murray, JCI Mayo member
Past President (2015)
Categorised in: Twinning
This post was written by makedo