SERVAS BOTSWANA MEETING
9-11 April 2010
Chez Molefe — TCE Plot 7B
At Tonota College of Education



Minutes

1 Attendance
Thirteen people were present from Friday 7 pm to 7 am on Sunday (9 to 11 April 2010) at venue at TEC.
They are (alphabetically):
1. Keineetse, Thabang J., PO Box 26031 Game City, Gaborone, Botswana, thabangkeineetse@gmail.com
2. Maila, Stella, Box 10021, Village PO, Botswana, stella.maila@yahoo.com
3. Masasa, Victoria M., PO Box 96, Maseru, Lesotho, servaslesotho@yahoo.com
4. Maweni, Janet Lechani, PO Box 30003 Francistown, Botswana (Plot 19462 Selepa) mawenij@yahoo.com
5. Mmusi, Neo Ngwaga Ms, Private Bag 0024 Bobonong, Botswana, ngwaga@yahoo.com
6. Molefe, Dorcas, Tonota College of Education, Private Bag T3, Tonota. molefed@excite.com
7. Mompati, Keletso Patience, Box 21333 Gaborone, Botswana, mlelekele@yahoo.com
8. Mopel, Monica M., Maseru East , Lesotho, mopel.matshekelo@yahoo.com
9. Mulenga, Felix, House No. 50576n New Canada, Gaborone, Botswana, mulengafel2406@yahoo.co.uk
10. Overeem, Maria, PO Box 26031 Game City, Gaborone, Botswana. overeemmaria@gmail.com
11. Ramphaleng, Joyce, PO Box 4042563 Gaborone, Botswana, jbramph@yahoo.com
12. Sebina, Nonofo Nnaiki Ms, PO Box 1842 Francistown (Plot 19464 Selepa) nonofosebina@yahoo.com
13. Weeks, Sheldon, Box 10021, Village PO, Botswana,Gudrun@info.bw or weekssg@rocketmail.com

2. Regrets
Mmachere Mareka <kmareka@webmail.co.za> had hoped to come from Serowe, as did Joe and Cathy Wanzala <watulatsu@info.bw> from Maun, Botswana, and Diana Panagotes <lamiki2005@yahoo.ca> from Maputo, Mozambique. Regrets were received from Seele and Odette.

3. Allocation of Special Tasks
Sheldon recorded. Other activities people volunteered to do spontaneously (they were all done during the weekend by all). People slept in Dorcas and Nonofo’s houses (the third was not needed as Nonofo brought with her extra air mattresses).

4. Welcome, Objectives & Introductions
The agenda was reviewed. Members went around the circle and introduced themselves. It was noted that there were three new people who were new to Servas and wished to join (numbers 4, 5 and 8 above or Ms Janet Maweni, Neo Mmusi and Monica Mopel).
Thabang led everyone in standup exercises.

5. Servas International and Servas Botswana
Sheldon showed slides of Servas AAM in Livingstone in 2007, of Botswana National Meetings in 2005, and of the Servas General Assembly in Argentina in 2009.
Two papers on the history of Servas were circulated, one from Servas India from the Goa Meeting (that Gudrun Weeks had attended) and the other a paper from 3 January 2010 on the history of Servas in Botswana. They were discussed and people asked questions.
The twinning (link) with Sweden for Botswana has not in the past year brought repli8es to communications from there.
It was suggested that Servas Botswana try to link with both Servas Spain and Servas Portugal to achieve the objectives of twinning): visit us in Botswana, we visit them, and assist with Host List distribution and Dolphin.

6. Servas in Africa
Some of the difficulties in developing Servas in Africa were reviewed.
It was noted that because Servas Botswana is small we all need to be aware of the other activities of peace and action organization such as the Botswana Workcamps Association and DITSHWANELO Botswana’s Human Rights Organization. Problems of migrants from other countries and growing Xenophobia were discussed.
Concern was expressed that so few visitors came to Botswana through Servas.
And that not all of ten Servas Stamps were used each year. We also need to make use of Servas when we travel, both within Botswana, in Southern Africa and elsewhere.

7. Servas and Peace
A concern was raised that we should be doing more as Peace Makers. Stella described the work of Alternatives to Violence (AVP and the training available in South Africa and in Gaborone if trainers are brought here again (to Forest Hill as in the past). Examples of problems of violence in the society were discussed.
It was noted that people were interested in HIP = Help Improve Peace. Members were encouraged to go through all levels of AVP training so that they can become FACILITATORS. Six people—in addition to Stella—said they wished to do the AVP training [Joyce, Maria, Keletso, Janet, Monica and Victoria].

8. Next African Area Meeting, 15-22 August 2011 in Kampala, Uganda
Six Servas Botswana members were at the last area meeting in Zambia in 2007. It was agreed that as many members as possible would try to by in Kampala in August 2011. It is a combined meeting for Africa and Youth worldwide. The coordinators are expected to go (youth, deputy and national).

9. Communication Issues and use of other Networks
The need to improve Servas as a web-based organization was discussed. It was reported that much is currently being done to achieve this objective. Members were encouraged to look at BeWelcome, Hospitality Club and CouchSurfing. The largest number of travellers reaching Botswana appears to be CouchSurfers. Sheldon reported that many of these are on a “mission” (such as “Charity Travel, NGO development, doctoral students, masters’ students and even undergraduate work placements and volunteers to work with NGOs). Keletso has been a member of CS and only one person has contacted her. Sheldon and Gudrun in two years have had about 20 from CS.

10. Election [positions: Coordinator, Deputy, Membership (Host List), Youth Representative, Newsletter, Treasurer]
It was noted that this was the first time that Servas Botswana has been able to elect more than the National Coordinator or Chair [Sheldon has now served five years, of a limit of six, since his first election at Serowe in 2005]. No Secretary was elected—a serious omission, but no one volunteered for this position.
It is trusted that all new officials will be able to pull their weight.
Results:
Chair, Sheldon Weeks until at the latest, August 2011 (Kampala)
Deputy, Keletso Mompati, (who should become the Chair when Sheldon completes a one year term)
Membership, Nonofo Sebina
Youth Representative, Stella Maila
Newsletter, Felix Mulenga
Treasurer, Maria Overeem

11. Interviews — two new members
Janet Lechani Maweni and Monica Mopel were interviewed (two small groups) and are now members of Servas Botswana and Servas Lesotho. [Neo wanted to be interviewed but was not present when the interviews were held.]

12. Finance
Expenses: As agreed at the National Meeting in December 2008 members now donated P50 each.
Income
P470 was collected by the treasurer and applied to cover the cost of food.

Expenses
Food P1,200.
Gifts in kind (transport: 1,000 km each at P2,5 per km, Felix and Sheldon; Nonofo 200 km; total P5,000. Housing: donated by Dorcas and Nonofo, value P1,000; donation to travel from Lesotho, Sheldon P600—Felix also had to deal with a flat tyre).

13. Next Meetings
During 2010-2011 in people’s homes for informal social gathering.
Next Botswana National Meeting in 2011 (date still to be set, at the home of Maria Overeem in Tsolamesese, Gaborone, Botswana)


Use of FaceBook
Sheldon will put 20 pictures from the meeting on FaceBook. Please see them there.
If you are not there yet and want to be please poke Sheldon to get an invitation.