= INTERNATIONAL SERVAS MEETINGS =
(Part of the message sent to all members by the SI President, Mr Jonny Saganger) :
"The novel corona virus SARS-CoV-2 and the disease Covid-19 are causing human suffering all around the world and will keep on pestering our lives both in physical and mental medical sense for an uncertain length of time.
Servas has been hard hit by the pandemic, both on an individual humanistic level and as an organisation. Servas’ core activity – the hospitality program with homestay – will dramatically shrink during 2020 and maybe even longer, since both international and domestic travels have come to an almost full stop because of the restrictions laid down by the authorities. And people use common sense and choose not to move around more than necessary in order not to risk their own and other people's health. Other main Servas activities like events and meetings have of course also been postponed or stalled. Servas continues to exist and the aim is to prevail as our organisation did during the financial crisis of 2007–2008 as well as other pandemics like the Asian Flu 1957–1958 and the 2009 swine flu.
As always, crisis moments also present opportunity. There’s a number of potential opportunities for Servas in the ongoing extremely painful upheaval, even though this will not be possible to grasp for the individual Servas members and their families who are effected in an immediate and tragical way. For the rest of us, who are not directly effected, it’s our responsibility towards them and our organisation to make the most and best out of the situation.
I have together with the other members of Servas International’s global board – SI Exco – agreed on the following motto: Servas doesn’t cancel – Servas adjusts.
Many of the opportunities that Servas should seize are driven by the increased intrest and possibilities for interactive digital communication and collaboration on web based electronic platforms. It’s also driven by the fact that the current medical need for physical distancing doesn’t mean that we need to distance ourselves from each other socially. As a matter of fact, it’s quite the opposite: The need for us to keep socially close is larger than ever."
We will try to keep you informed about International Servas Events. As this is a temporary situation, we will be updating this page as often as needed. Thank you!
= INTERNATIONAL ONLINE SERVAS MEETINGS =
- We are pleased to share with all international Servas members the invitation to attend online meetings promoted by US Servas.
If you are interested, open this link and follow the instructions provided.
Sat, Jan. 9 — 9am PT /10am MT / 11am CT / 12pm ET
Climate Change Series - Part 1, Introduction
The international community has long seen the need to address the threat to the planet from rising levels of greenhouse gases. In 1988, the UN endorsed the formation of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The impact of climate change is becoming more apparent year by year. Where do things stand today? Where do we go from here? Fred Bialy from the Climate Reality Project will briefly review the science and impacts of climate change, present the latest IPCC assessments, and discuss the range of solutions available to us. This event is in preparation for the upcoming EN-ROADS presentation and others in this series. Sign up here. (Feel free to attend any or all parts of the climate change series.)
Wed, Jan. 13 - 5:30pm PT / 6:30pm MT / 7:30pm CT / 8:30pm ET
Diego Rivera and the Panamerican Unity Mural (repeat)
Join us to learn about and discuss this mural created in 1940 by Diego Rivera who envisioned it as “establish(ing) a common citizenship for everybody in the Americas." This monumental fresco, 22’ high x 74’ wide, is one of Rivera's greatest works. Its purpose was to show the unity between Latin America and the United States leading up to the Second World War. It is currently at City College of San Francisco. Sign up here.
Sat, Jan. 23 — 10am PT /11am MT / 12am CT / 1pm ET
Climate Change Series: Part 2, EN-ROADS workshop
EN-ROADS is a cutting-edge, interactive simulation model that helps people understand connections, play out scenarios, and see what works to address climate change, inequity, and related issues like energy, health, and food. The resulting experience is hopeful, scientifically-grounded, action-oriented, and eye-opening. More info here. Facilitator: Ann Brown, Servas member, science teacher and climate activist. Don't miss experiencing this amazing tool! Sign up here. (Feel free to attend any or all parts of the climate change series.)
Sat, Feb 13 — 10am PT /11am MT / 12am CT / 1pm ET
Book Discussion: The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander (2010, paperback, 336 pages)
A stunning account of the rebirth of a caste-like system in the United States, one that has resulted in millions of African Americans locked behind bars and then relegated to a permanent second-class status—denied the very rights supposedly won in the Civil Rights Movement. The book has appeared on the New York Times bestseller list for more than a year, and been dubbed the “secular bible of a new social movement” by numerous commentators, including Cornel West. The New Jim Crow tells a truth our nation has been reluctant to face. We will discuss three chapters: Introduction, Ch. 1 & 5. You're also encouraged to watch the film 13th by Ava DuVernay. Sign up here.
Tue, Feb 23 — 4pm PT / 5pm MT / 6pm CT / 7pm ET
Book Discussion with author: The Snake That Did Not Bite: Nuriye’s World by Louis Mitler (Historical Fiction, 2019,474 pages)
1973: The First Bridge opens in Istanbul linking Asia and Europe. On her last night in her mansion overlooking the Bosphorus, Ottoman aristocrat Nuriye reflects on the seventy years of Turkish and world history and the human conditions she has experienced. Like the First Bridge, Nuriye’s life spans multiple cultures: The African religion of her nurse, the severe British strictures of her governess and the transition from the suffocating world of the late Ottoman Empire to modern Turkey. Sign up here.
Every Sat - 6:30pm PT / 7:30pm MT / 8:30pm CT / 9:30pm ET
Fred's Foodie/Film/Travel Soirée
Join Servas member Fred Carpenter and friends for conversation with fellow travelers, food & film lovers. Fred usually starts the conversation with a 30-min. video of street food in various parts of the world. Sign up by emailing Fred to receive the weekly Zoom link.
Upcoming book discussions
(check the US Servas calendar and future events announcements for dates):
Caste: The Origins of Our Discontents by Isabel Wilkerson
White Fragility by Robin DiAngelo
My Grandmother’s Hands: Racialized Trauma and the Pathway to Mending Our Hearts and Bodies by Resmaa Menakem
The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself by Michael A. Singer
Strangers in Their Own Land: Anger and Mourning on the American Right by Arlie Russell Hochschild
- Invite your former host to join you and other Servas travelers and hosts in a scheduled Meet My Host! virtual gathering.
See here how to do it: https://usservas.org/page/meet-my-host