American Friends Service Committee Corporation Meeting report to Annual Session 2016

Nancy Ahlberg Mellor, PYM Representative to AFSC Corp.

A quotation from the AFSC website reads: “The American Friends Service Committee (AFSC) is a Quaker organization that promotes lasting peace with justice, as a practical expression of faith in action. Drawing on continuing spiritual insights and working with people of many backgrounds, we nurture the seeds of change and respect for human life that transform social relations and systems.” 

The Corporation of the American Friends Service Committee is the organizing body that chooses the AFSC Board, which in turn sets the direction of the organization.  The Corporation meets annually.  As a representative of Pacific Yearly Meeting to the American Friends Service Committee Corporation, I had the privilege to attend the most recent sessions of the 99th AFSC Corporation, held on March 4 and 5, 2016 at the Friends Center in Philadelphia.  In addition to the business meetings of the Corporation, the days and evenings were filled with workshops that reflected the theme “Change the Story, Change the World” and included material and ideas that are meant to be shared with our home Meetings.

The current work of the American Friends Service Committee is covered at other times at Yearly Meeting and will be explained by those who work directly with programs.  From my perspective as a member of the corporation, I can say that I am immensely honored to be a tiny part of the AFSC, the work of which I have known and respected for nearly sixty years.  In addition, my membership on the Corporation has increased my interest in the projects located in the Central Valley, the Pan Valley Institute in Fresno and Project Voice in Stockton.  That interest has led to visits and presentations at Sacramento Friends Meeting by Myrna Nateras and Luis Magana and by members of the meeting to their projects.   Thank you, Pacific Yearly Meeting for my appointment to the Corporation of the American Friends Service Committee.