CSCA-Gondar is governed by a Council of Advisors and ultimately the Board of Directors of the Corvallis Sister Cities Association. CSCA-Gondar Council — and CSCA Board members — are elected by the membership at the organization’s annual meeting in June. Council members are elected for two-year terms, with the exception that the Assistant Treasurer serves a three-year term.
Current Council members and officers are listed below:
Richard Raymond, Chair
Karen Sundseth, Vice-Chair
Maxine Prickel, Secretary
Jared Marquardt, Assistant Treasurer
Committees have been formed by the Council of Advisors to allow citizen volunteers to focus on specific areas of interest. It is at the committee level that specific projects are initiated and carried out. CSCA-Gondar has a work plan for the organization as a whole.
- Water and Watershed Committee
The mission of the Water and Watershed Committee is to improve the quality of life for citizens of Gondar by developing drinking water sources, supporting watershed restoration activities, developing long-term sustainability plans for our infrastructure investments, improving income generation opportunities and developing partnerships with Corvallis area academic programs and community groups to encourage involvement with Gondar citizens.
In order to achieve this mission, the committee adopts an annual work plan which describes various goals, tasks and projects. The work plan reflects ongoing collaboration with partners in Gondar to ensure that the plan addresses issues most important to citizen groups. Ongoing projects include tree planting and well construction, while new initiatives include a micro-loan program, a cook stove manufacturing facility and a water distribution system in a rural kebele. A past project, funded through a grant from Sister Cities International, resulted in the construction of four public restroom/shower facilities and a public health clinic.
Recognizing the importance of sustainability, programs have been developed to ensure that our investments are maintained and evaluated for success.
- Education Committee
The Education Committee was formed to develop projects to improve the educational opportunities for children in the Gondar school system. In 2007 thirty-two blackboards were purchased and installed at the Tsadiku Yohannes School. Prior to this many lessons were simply written on the walls. One of the primary current priorities is to ship needed books to the schools – the library shelves in the schools are virtually empty. Additionally, the committee has initiated an art exchange project in which students in Corvallis and Gondar exchange hand-made artwork.
- Other Committees
Other committees are formed on an as-needed basis. Each year priorities are reviewed with Gondar representatives to assure that our resources are directed appropriately.