Future strategy meeting notes and feedback

Thanks everyone for making time for today's meeting. It was a great lunch and discussion. For your reference, the sushi was from Popula in Ivanhoe. Maybe we should make lunches after training a regular event!

Below is a summary of our discussion points and precis of your ideas for improvement/innovation:

  • Yvonne described the grants landscape, with focus on local gov't grants from Banyule. Either need to become incorporated or be auspiced by VKR. 
  • $2500 equip't grants come up monthly. Other entry-level grants for community groups available. Support focus on locality and niche-sports/activities. 
  • Ideas for equipment: curtains for changeroom; mirror for dojo
  • Next tier is State Gov't grants accessed through VKR, particularly ones to support increased participation by women and girls, funding for AED (defibrillator)
  • Yvonne believed incorporation shouldn't be onerous. Perhaps one hour per month on avg for committee members. Andrew pointed out various tax breaks can also be accessed once incorporated.
  • Overall it seemed that we should continue as we are for the short term and delegate specific, project-based roles while we grow the club to the point where we feel it feasible to become an incorporated body.
  • More time looking at things other than just Kendo technique, the bigger picture
  • Separating kids and adults from time to time at training
  • Website enhancement
  • more delegation of duties
  • explain culture and theory better
  • more training --> more sweat!
  • Training with other clubs (degeiko/musha shugyo)
  • small competition regularly
  • more tennis ball game!

(At the bottom of this post there is full transcript of all the feedback and ideas you described in the written activity we did today.)

There will be opportunity to nominate yourself as an individual, or several of you as a team, to take on a chosen role. The deadline for decisions will be during our usual shugo after training on Saturday 2 November.

Roles for consideration

Competition Manager: Involves communication with VKR and club members as well as attendance on the day of competition. Is possible to be undertaken by someone who also wants to compete. Mick can provide induction and checklists for anyone who would like to try this role.

Club Secretary: someone to be the main recipient of information from VKR and AKR and who distributes information to members via various means (website, social media, email, in person). Examples of information would be: calendar dates, competitions, gradings, memberships, seminars, grant opportunities, festivals and demonstration requests, inquiries from prospective beginners, etc.

Website revamp: we have a lot of online assets but a lot of gaps in our presentation and functionality. A redesign and perhaps rehosting of our website might give us better visibility and ability to respond to inquiries. It could also provide more easily accessed information for members. Having several members who could contribute content would be a help as well. Our current site doesn't communicate alerts as well as it could.

An associated resource could be a Youtube channel that creates training resources for members to access. These resources could be aimed at conveying information that we didn't have time to get across in class, or that could help members who couldn't train more than once a week to do their own home training. Having someone who could shoot, edit and upload this content would be very helpful. Some content could go behind a Patreon paywall to help provide funds for the club.

VKR Committee member: this is a role for someone to nominate simply to attend the four VKR meetings each year, usually held at Kenshikan on a Sunday from 12.30 to 2.00pm approx. They would communicate information back to members, and would vote on our behalf on decisions before the VKR.

Pros and Cons of Incorporation: this person would make a list of advantages and disadvantages of becoming an incorporated body. Perhaps included in this might be that person's estimation of the threshold or trigger-point whereby incorporation goes from being definitely unfeasible to definitely feasible.

Japan trip: a committee to look at feasibility of attending the Michinoko Dojo's annual Gasshuku at Yamanakako https://goo.gl/maps/8rkmpKgwFowtPjnr9. The date would be a weekend in mid-August 2021. Feasibility would include an estimation of travel costs (air and train travel, accommodation at the gasshuku and also in Tokyo before and and after if necessary). Michinoko is actually in Tokyo (Shibuya https://goo.gl/maps/bNaFrJXnAbQg5qBM9), not Yokohama as I thought.   http://michinoko.sub.jp/      https://www.facebook.com/michinokodojo/

As a preparatory trip, we could set next year's Kangeiko in Sydney, visiting Kizuna Dojo https://www.kizunadojo.com and Sokaku Reishinkan, https://reishinkan.weebly.com/ both dojos that have lots of kids and adults as well.

Here are some photos of previous year's Michinoko gasshuku at Yamanakako. Looks terrible doesn't it?  😀 The pics are mainly taken from Cain Lee's Instagram https://www.instagram.com/nicecain/
Click to enlarge each pic.

Your answers to the question "What do you think the club does well?"

The whole club culture is very friendly.

a family-friendly environment which encourages participants of all ages and backgrounds. We have (in my personal view) a great teacher who balances fun with 'formality' and balances budo with sport.

like the people and the intensity of the class.

The mix of adults and kids, of a range of ages, has made for a really friendly and welcoming environment.

relaxed, friendly, supportive culture

small dojo; relaxed atmosphere; originality, original waza

It's fun.

The club does an amazing job of running training for all ages. The family-friendly nature of the club is what led us to select Nanseikan, and a big part of the reason we stay.

We are good at helping others in the club.

welcome people, inclusive atmosphere, small club

Your answers to the question, "What would you love to see the club do differently or in addition to what it does now?"

Regular monthly competitions within the club.

Maybe spreading operational functions amongst club members will ease the burden on sensei and will reduce "key person risk".

More of the tennis ball game.

Like to add more training days.

I think there is the opportunity to become the go-to website for club information and wider VKR calendar information. Amalgamating the photos/videos to put the welcoming environment on display.

Consider separating children and adults for some exercises when class is crowded.

In the past we have trained at other clubs, and once or twice per year this is great. A trip to Japan would be amazing.

I think we need to do more tennis ball games.

Explain culture and theory of kendo more.

learn things other than techniques: posture, breathing, stretching, meditation, philosophy, etc


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