Around this time last year, while signing holiday cards with my LCNV colleagues, we were excitedly talking about plans we had for the coming year – plans of travel, becoming better connected to the people in our lives, strengthening connections with the community, and serving our learner population in Northern Virginia to the best of our ability. Then in March, when the pandemic struck and we needed to adjust to a new normal, I realized that while some of those plans had to be cancelled, many of them were in fact more important than ever. Our focus has been to cope with sudden changes and learn alongside our learners, teachers, and volunteers how best to adapt to new scenarios.
This year has been like a roller coaster – we paused in-person classes in March and then turned our attention to supporting teachers and learners with virtual learning. We had to cancel in-person gatherings but were proud to develop fantastic online events with strong attendance. Through the ups and downs, our learners have always been our focal point as we design and implement strategies and frankly, miracles! Most importantly, through facing and managing these unexpected changes, our team has bonded like never before. We know better how to collaborate with each other even when we are not in the same space, we are more in tune with how our decisions and actions affect each other’s work, and we have learned more about each of our personal motivations, joys, and interests through regular social gatherings via Zoom. I truly appreciate the dedication, patience, and understanding our community has shown throughout the last nine months.
It is again that time of the year – the time of hopes, reflections, and plans. While we cannot be together in person, we celebrate our connection to each other and to you. Our collective hope for better days ahead is strong. We keep in mind those who have suffered this year, and we wish you all a healthy, safe, and warm holiday season. I look forward to continuing to work with each of you in the coming year.
Roopal Mehta Saran,