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National Office:
Foundation for International Cooperation
1237 S. Western Ave.
Park Ridge, IL 60068

Thinking outside the box

by Irene Horst, Editor

Another New Year, another decade. Seems like just yesterday that we were entering the new century, worried that all computers would be thrown into a tizzy, and that unforeseen, horrible occurrences would happen to the world, but they did not come. We went on with our lives as usual. Now we are in a new decade, ready to go on, ready to face the changes that are inevitable, ready to live our lives as best as we know how.
“Thinking outside the box” is a phrase that is used often around us these days. It conjures up a positive image of breaking out of our present tried and staid ways of doing things and moving out into different, little known areas. Perhaps FIC is also ready to “break out of the box”. We are no longer limited to our own localities, entertaining in our own homes, and seeing people in other parts of the world. It is time for us to restructure, shift our horizon beyond the familiar. We are meeting other organizations whose bottom lines read much like our Mission Statement. We are attempting to join forces with and help groups and peoples who think the way we do. We are an intercultural organization, meaning that we as members encompass the challenge of real inculturation. The latter occurs when different cultures encounter each other, engage each other, listen and learn from each other. Then they are open to be changed by each other. FICers must continue to do this on a one-to-one basis, on a grass roots level, but reach out further

Our Small World Fund has led us into the direction of meeting this challenge. We have been instrumental in extending a helping hand to the Colegio La Esperanza in Mexico, a cottage industry in Kenya, and a school in Thailand, as examples. Because FIC is a non-profit organization, we gather money (a la St. Nicholas) only to give it away. Membership dues are the monies we have to work with in the Small World Fund. We need the help of everyone who has been a member, is a member, and might be a potential member. Because we are a non-profit organization, contributions are tax deductible. We have no ”middle-men”, no big administrative costs. And to be sure, we do not sell or share our membership list.
Hopefully, by working together, we can “break out of the box”, move forward, and meet the challenges that lie ahead of us …with the help of all our friends.

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