Quarterly news: June - September 2013

Featuring highlights (in alphabetical order) from Australia, Ghana, Papua New Guinea, South Africa and the United Arab Emirates


Workplace learning in Ghana, West Africa

Ghana Christian University College (GCUC) has recently affiliated with GULL and established the Centre for Workplace Learning to serve individuals and organizations in the workplace. Led by Dr Brian Jennings, the Centre is offering two pathways in Educational Practice and Leadership and Management Practice. GCUC plans to deliver these initially in churches and private schools. To strengthen the Centre’s understanding of workplace learning, members of the Centre team are currently using the GULL system for personal and professional development.

(Left) Members of the Centre For Workplace Learning Team (Left to right): Yaw Dankwa, Gabriel Annan, Nelson Ahlijah and Brian Jennings




A new book about GULL’s work with rural communities

In August 2013 the first book about GULL’s work around the world - written by Ortrun Zuber-Skerritt and Richard Teare - was published by Sense Publishers, specialists in educational research.

About the book:
The book explains how indigenous communities can be strengthened (leading to greater self-reliance, financial independence and other benefits) by participating in lifelong action learning.

About the book cover:
Many indigenous cultures maintain a tradition with roots in the idea of ‘the circle of friendship’. Community members meet regularly around an open fire to share ideas and celebrate peace and friendship.




Book launch at North-West University, South Africa

On Wednesday, 18 September 2013 the new book about GULL’s work with rural communities was launched at North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa. Co-authors Dr Ortrun Zuber-Skerritt, one of the world’s leading writers on participatory action learning and action research and GULL President, Dr Richard Teare gave a presentation about the book at the launch event.

The book explains the new concept of lifelong action learning in the context of GULL applications in East Africa and Papua New Guinea. Where possible, GULL aims to work with national system developers and the book profiles several of the best and most successful indigenous systems for community mobilization and development.


(Above left) Left to right: Ortrun Zuber-Skerritt co-author, Lesley Wood, Research Professor, North-West University, Bruce Damons, School Principal and PhD candidate and Richard Teare, co-author

(Above right) NWU Potchefstroom Campus.




Community Engagement Seminar:
North-West University

On Thursday, 19 September 2013 The Faculty of Educational Sciences, North-West University, Potchefstroom Campus hosted a seminar on the theme ‘Descending from the Ivory Tower: Community Engagement for Mutual Learning’ Organized by Professor Lesley Wood, the event explored the many ways in which South African universities partner with communities.

Ortrun Zuber-Skerritt, GULL Regional President, Australasia spoke about participatory action learning and action research and Richard Teare, GULL President, considered ways of extending participation in lifelong action learning with reference to options for using GULL in community development.


(Above left) Some of the seminar participants pictured with Professor Robert Balfour (centre) Dean of the Faculty of Education Sciences,

(Above right) North-West University, Potchefstroom




Celebrating community outcomes: GULL in South Africa

On Saturday 21 September, the Faculty of Education Sciences, North-West University, Potchefstroom hosted GULL’s first recognition ceremony in South Africa.

GULL’s pilot community development work led by Engela van der Klashorst of the University of Pretoria began in 2011. Engela and her mother have been engaged in voluntary community service for a number of years.

The aim of the GULL pilot was to explore the potential for non-academic pathways linked with personal and professional development for young adults. The projects undertaken ranged from the development of a community park to fundraising for a nursery school.




Celebrating community outcomes:
21 Sep 13, Potchefstroom

One of the current goals of the South African administration is to improve educational access by extending the range of non-traditional development pathways. In this context, Engela van der Klashorst established a GULL pilot and cascade in consultation with the Ministry of Recreation and Sport.

The GULL pilot enabled students from the University of Pretoria to engage with several low income townships using the neutral medium of sport. Weekly sport interventions provided the foundations for a powerful and effective community mobilization process with many benefits for the community participants and their townships.


(Above left) Township participants in the pilot led by students from the University of Pretoria

(Above right) Engela Booyzen (left) and Engela van der Klashorst, co-facilitators of the pilot.




Food safety management:
Sharjah, United Arab Emirates (UAE)

On Sunday 22 September 2013, Dr Jerry Taylor of TSI Quality Services (a GULL affiliate organization) hosted a series of visits and meetings in Dubai and the adjoining municipality of Sharjah. Among many other projects in UAE, Jerry and his colleagues manage a large food safety programme for the Government of Sharjah.

During the day-long visit, we met a number of Government officials and programme leaders to discuss the ways in which GULL might support Sharjah’s leading edge food safety work in the region.


(Above left) Representatives from the Sharjah Municipality Food safety programme

(Above right) Richard Teare and Jerry Taylor at TSI’s offices in Dubai.




Book launch in Australia
ALARA conference, 24 September

The Action Learning, Action Research Association (ALARA) is a strategic network of people interested in using action research and action learning to generate collaborative learning, research and action to transform organizations.

As ALARA’s 2013 Australasian Conference (held at Riverglenn, Brisbane on 23-24 September 13) was based on the theme ‘Creating a Better World’ it was an appropriate place and time to launch a book about GULL’s work with the sub-title ‘Learning and development for a Better World.’


(Above left) Maureen Todhunter (left) Copy Editor, Ron Passfield, ALARA, Richard Teare and Jo Anne Pomfrett (right) Proof Reader.

(Above right) GULL Australasia officer John Wicks (left) with Richard and Jo Anne.




Personal Viability with GULL
Annual Graduation Event

The Lihir Islands, New Ireland Province, Papua New Guinea is a small cluster of islands more than two hours flying time from the capital, Port Moresby. Home to around 12,000 people, Lihir and its neighbouring islands provide the natural resources to sustain a subsistence lifestyle. Lihir also has one of the largest and richest deposits of gold and now hosts Papua New Guinea’s largest gold mine.

In one of the country’s most innovative self-development initiatives, the people of Lihir are preparing for life beyond mining with the step-by-step creation of new sustainable industries using the ‘Personal Viability’ system designed and developed by Dr Samuel Tam.


(Above left) Master coach Alison Simbe prepares the PV-GULL participants for the procession from their new market hall to the graduation venue

(Above right) Samuel Tam




Towards self-reliance and financial independence

The annual PV-GULL Lihir graduation event, with more than 50 recipients of level 1 and 2 awards, was held on Thursday 26 September. Additionally, for the first time, the event included the presentation of business account resources to 23 level 4 participants.

While levels 1-3 inclusive prepare the person, level 4 enables participants to advance via the creation of a limited company in support of each participant’s own micro enterprise.


(Above left) Representatives from one of Papua New Guinea’s major banks present business account resources to PV-GULL level 4 participants – now directors of their own small business.

(Above right) Richard Teare congratulates a PV-GULL level 2 student.




Laying the foundations for sustainable new businesses

The ‘Personal Viability’ (PV) system offers participants a seven step pathway to prosperity – without undermining the culture and traditional way of life of the people of the Lihir Islands.

As Lihirians prepare for life after the goldmine, PV with GULL is helping to lay the foundations for new sustainable businesses. Level 3 and 4 participants are already generating trading surpluses from their micro enterprise activities and for the first time, they are able to meet all their financial needs by fully utilizing their own human potential and the natural resources available to them.




Using action learning in applied research and publishing

On Monday 30 September, Richard Teare facilitated a seminar for doctoral researchers at Griffith University, Gold Coast Campus, Australia. As Managing Editor, Worldwide Hospitality and Tourism Themes, Richard explained how action learning can be used to foster collaborative industry- education applied research and publication. This approach helps to generate sustainable solutions to the many challenges faced by communities and organizations involved in one of the world’s largest industries.


(Above) Richard Teare with some of the doctoral researchers at the seminar.


GULL is a non-profit public benefit corporation registered in California, USA. GULL’s mandate to confer professional awards is based on a statement of recognition offered in perpetuity and signed by the Head of State and the Prime Minister of Papua New Guinea on 10 April 2007. GULL is also endorsed by other Governments, Leaders and Institutions.

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