On April 10th, we had our first IARS away day of the year, and it was an eventful one at that (spoiler alert it ended with a punch!) The team got together and took the opportunity to get to know one another and familiarise themselves with the projects that our project coordinators are working hard to deliver.

As a new member of the team I found the away day particularly insightful as it not only allowed me to connect better with everyone but it taught me what IARS really stands for. From interns to projects, and office management to budget we discussed the best strategies moving forward taking into consideration every person involved with IARS, from our beneficiaries to our trustees.

IARS' core values are user & civic participation, restorative justice and dialogue, individual empowerment and responsibility. We act in the spirit of partnership, dignity, integrity and honesty and we remain independent, fearless and respectful of diversity and equality issues. Three years ago we agreed on strategic aims that took into consideration the economic crisis as it impacts on young people and other marginalised groups' solidarity, employability and social cohesion. Our new three year strategy is currently in the making and now more than ever we are looking to come up with strategies that strengthen community ties and empower marginalised groups. We also came up with action plans that we know for sure will strengthen the infrastructure of our charity and help us spread our charitable mission.

Now we all know working in a charity can be stressful so our Director, Theo Gavrielides, signed everyone up for a boxing session! That 45 minute session had all our adrenalin pumping and it’s safe to say we all made the most of that time!

I am really excited to see where we go from here, we’ve already had an eventful three and a bit months and the rest of the year is looking promising!

Watch this space!