I would like to share with you some information about the SCMA Education Foundation and their amazing efforts.
The Foundation is the 501(c)(3) charitable and educational arm of the SCMA, and this year we are celebrating its Tenth Anniversary and the extraordinary work it has done!
In the last ten years, its achievements have included providing materials for mediator training to universities and community mediation centers as well as supporting middle- and high-school peer mediation programs.
2016 was a stellar year for the Foundation. It:
raised about $20,000, including a generous grant from the Judicate West Foundation;
distributed funds to schools and other organizations that support peer mediation programs;
coordinated with SCMA and INVLA on panels and a celebratory dinner focusing on peer mediation;
and worked with LA Council on Human Relations to develop lesson plans on mediation and respectful communications for middle- and senior-high school students.
was recognized by the LA City Council with a Proclamation in support of National Conflict Resolution Day in October.
presented its Annual Directors’ Award in November at the SCMA Fall Conference to John Haas, Ph.D. for his work on international peacebuilding with college students.
This year, the 10th Anniversary, The Foundation has already embarked on an ambitious program of enhancing its operating systems, bringing on new board members, raising even more funds and supporting even more schools than last year, as well as establishing closer collaborations with other organizations in the area.
As SCMA President, former board member of the Foundation, and now Ex Officio Member of the Foundation Board, I have personally watched the Foundation grow and develop its programs and expertise, and I cannot urge you strongly enough to “Celebrate The First Ten Years” by contributing generously to support peer mediation programs and mediator training.
Go to the Foundation’s website www.scmaedfoundation.org and click on the links on the home page to the two wonderful videos that show just how much peer mediation programs mean to students and their schools and communities, and then click on the Blue Donate button to support these programs.
This year, more than ever, given the contentious communications environment and the increase in bullying in the schools, it is vitally important that we bring the skills and approaches of mediation, of respect for each individual, and of peaceful conflict resolution to our youth so they have these skills for their personal and professional success. It is only then that we create the more peaceful society we all want and need.
For those of you who may not be familiar with the Foundation, go to the website and see all the information there that makes it a central resource for mediation programs, and discover the gem that SCMA established ten years ago.
Be sure to contribute! Any and all amounts are welcomed and will support these vital programs. You can contribute in other ways as well. The Foundation welcomes people who would like to explore joining the board and helping to foster its programs.
Let’s make 2017 a real celebration with your contributions and a record number of Friends of the Foundation!
Anne Sawyer is an independent Mediation and Alternative Dispute Resolution Consultant. In addition her private consultation practice, she is the Executive Director of the Southern California Mediation Association.
Her mission is to foster, support and promote mediators and other neutrals and to further increase peaceful resolution of conflicts. Raising public awareness as to the many values of mediation and increase its use to address a broad variety of public and private disputes in a confidential, safe and empowering process is her passion.