Regional Announcement: Member Care on the Asia-Pacific Region has just reached a new level of development!
On March 1, 2016, Cindy Schmelzenbach will become the Region’s first Asia-Pacific Member Care coordinator! Cindy, wife of Melanesia South Pacific Field Strategy Coordinator Harmon Schmelzenbach, comes to this assignment with a lot of passion, experience, and training. Cindy currently serves as Personnel and Member Care & Development Coordinator for the Melanesia South Pacific Field.
What exactly is “Member Care?” A generally agreed upon definition is that, “Member care is the ongoing preparation, equipping and empowering of mission personnel for effective and sustainable life, ministry and work.” ¹ It is also one of the nine Regional Priorities that helps the Asia-Pacific Region strategically prioritize activities. “Ministry is about people. As a Region, we will develop systems and initiatives that develop and care holistically for all the cross-cultural workers and their families serving on the Region.” ²
It may seem like a daunting task to help develop Member Care systems on a region that includes 6 fields and 175 employed and volunteer missionary personnel, not counting children! But Cindy is looking forward to the assignment.
“I am honestly very energized in thinking of the opportunity to serve in this role. It is truly a privilege to serve on the Asia-Pacific team,” said Schmelzenbach.
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Marty Hoskins, Personnel Coordinator for Global Missions, expressed his full support of this development.
“I’m excited that Cindy has accepted this new role of Member Care Coordinator for the Asia-Pacific Region,” says Hoskins. “Cindy brings expertise because of her training and experience but more than that she brings a passion for developing and caring for people, especially those called to serve as missionaries. Not only is this a first for Asia-Pacific but the first for any of our Global Mission regions. We look forward to working with Cindy as we help each of our regions develop and implement Member Care.”
Cindy is taking the lead role in coordinating a March meeting of field Member Care Coordinators to be held in Manila, Philippines. She has also begun writing a series of monthly articles that will be posted on the Asia-Pacific Regional web site. The first article, “Breathing Deep… Endurance for the Race” has been well received.
– Submitted by Dave Hane, A-P Regional Personnel Coordinator.
¹Definition agreed upon by the Global Member Care Network of the WEA Mission Commission in 2008. ²2015 Asia-Pacific Strategic Plan document.