Zoom supported by online marketing led to our AGM’s highest attendance for many years on 19th September with 21 friends attending from Scotland, Wales, Jersey, England, Switzerland, South Africa & eSwatini and Mongolia with an exclusive video from Honduras. The highlights of the AGM were undoubtedly the presence of staff from the Mongolia Development Centre and from Setsembiso Sebunye Foundation who gave moving personal accounts of working within very challenging environments to continuously support children and families in their capacity building programmes. Their resilience and innovative attitude towards maintaining the work in the face of Covid lockdowns was inspiring to all present. As a consequence of the AGM our partners in Mongolia and eSwatini are now in direct contact with each other for inspiration and support. In view of the time difference, our partner in Honduras, the Bayan Association, forwarded a pre-recorded presentation from the Community Banking Finance manager (with accompanying translation into English).

Friends and supporters of BASED UK had opportunities to ask questions from the partners and from the BASED UK Officers following their presentations. Issues discussed included the possibility of a name change from ‘Bahá’í Agency for Social and Economic Development’ (BASED UK) to something more closely aligned with the charity’s purpose (suggestions welcome!). One supporter stated the Zoom AGM ‘brings it to life rather than just (reporting) in black and white’; another stated that as a teacher, they were ‘very struck by the focus on education…it was wonderful to see it all’.

In all it was an inspiring and uplifting gathering spurring us all on to continue our efforts to support these significant educational initiatives. BASED UK looks forward to your involvement with our work in any capacity!