Just before Petra was officially born, 3 of Petra's 5 Board of Directors were privileged to meet up in January 2016 in southern California at the Rotary Peace Conference.
Rotary had flown me (Bianca) in from Spain to moderate one of the tracks. Sam made the effort to fly in from her home in Virginia. And there was no way that Californian Loretta would possibly miss it, since she was right up the road in San Francisco and she'd already made the effort to make it to Brazil for the Rotary Peace Symposium where she and I originally met.
Petra is as a highly globalized NGO with 5 directors in 4 different time zones living in 3 different countries, so we don't take these opportunities lightly! Thankfully, we had this chance before we legally incorporated for the majority of us to be in the same place at the same time.
It felt like a final doctor's check-up for the pregnant mom (Bianca) with her two very experienced and professional midwives, Loretta and Sam to make sure all was well before the long-awaited new arrival was born!
Thanks to Loretta's networking, I'd already been in touch with District Governor Nick Frankle, who was replacing Loretta as Rotary DG of District 5240. It's possible that one of the Rotary clubs within District 5240 will take the lead on the funding for Petra's pilot project in 2017, so it was a real joy to spend some time getting to know Nick and his wife Heather, and for them to get the scoop on Petra and our ambitions in the world of peacebuilding.
Meanwhile, Sam was running around the conference making all kinds of new connections and getting inspired on all the good work being done to stop her most detested of global scourges -- human trafficking.
It was an intense event for all 3 of us, each in our own way. Intensity notwithstanding, I left California refreshed, encouraged and super inspired to now give birth to this thing, especially after having had the pleasant experience of seeing Petra's leadership bond so well in person.
Lucas, we expect you there at the next Peace Conference!