Happy New Year, Happy New HI-USA!

2012 will be a year of exciting change for HI-USA.   In the year ahead, we will begin to unify the operations of our 26 separate local chapters plus our national office into a single nationwide organization.   Truly, it’s a change for the ages.

For 77 years, HI-USA has operated as a decentralized, chapter-based organization.    It’s a structure that worked at one time, but with talent and resources divided among different organizational parts, it is no longer optimal in a world that rewards speed, flexibility and adaptability.

One needs to only ask friends and colleagues in nonprofit circles to understand how unusual a complete consolidation is.  It’s virtually unheard of.

Yet our local chapters made the ultimate decision: unify.   Why?   Because we will be stronger together.  Together we can better focus on three things that matter to all of us:

–   Better hostels:  We will expand and improve our hostels to engage more people in our unique travelling experience.

–   Better communities:  We will enhance our outreach and education activities to support our communities — in person, and through new social media channels.

–   A better world:  Together, these efforts will help us build intercultural understanding, especially among young people.

It’s an exciting prospect, enabled by the economies, efficiencies and funding advantages of larger scale.

In the year ahead, some of my blog posts will share information and ideas on our evolving organization.   I invite you to take this adventure together.

We are organizing to realize an extraordinary aspiration:  to help all, especially the young, gain a greater understanding of the world and its people through hostelling.

May the New Year bring you peace, happiness, and prosperity.

By | 2015-04-22T10:38:28+00:00 December 30th, 2011|Our Community|0 Comments

About the Author:

Since 2000, Russ has been the CEO of Hostelling International USA (HI USA), a nonprofit, member organization founded on an enduring belief in the power of travel to foster a deeper understanding of people, places, and the world around. The HI USA hostel network is consistently recognized as one of the best in world by the International Youth Hostel Federation and by independent rating agencies. Russ has been a featured speaker at national and international conferences on topics ranging from experiential education to nonprofit management. Russ serves on the Boards of the UNWTO, US Travel Association, and WYSTC.

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