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Issue: 8June 19, 2012
Families in Global Transition leads the worldwide community in empowering familes and those who serve them in global transition. FIGT is the premier advocate and educational resource for families, organizations and service providers.

Save the date for the 2013 FIGT Annual Conference to be held on March 22-23, 2013 in Silver Spring, Maryland. Program, registration, and conference details are coming soon.

REQUEST FOR PROPOSALS: Do you have a personal history to share, a work philosophy, a special expertise, research findings, or strategies for successful international relocation? FIGT is now accepting proposals for the 2013 Annual Conference, click here for instructions on how to submit a proposal. 


Home Sweet Home - Preparing for Repatriation 


Swiss Affiliate Event Panel
Swiss Affiliate Panel

The FIGT Swiss Affiliate continues to power ahead leading the way with panels and discussions on topics relevant to the global mobility industry as well as those in transition themselves.  The latest event which discussed the sometimes confusing issue of repatriation was held in at the Vaud Chamber of Commerce and Industry in Laussane on Monday May 21st, and was sponsored by International Link and Sterling. 

On arrival, attendees were welcomed with several activities on the theme of repatriation, which included concerns of professionals, partners, and teens, and children. A lively discussion was sparked as people were encouraged to mark a world map with the place, or places, that defined 'home' for them.

The repatriation panelists were Ms. Anne-Claude Lambelet, Dr. Michele O'Donnell, Ms. Melina Hiralal and Ms. Apple Gidley, via Skype.  The presentation, which allowed for breaks for comments and readings from Apple as well as comments and interaction from attendees, highlighted the importance of repatriation support as well as reintegration coaching.  Statistics shared stated that 23% of repatriating employees leave their company within the first year of return to the 'home' country, and that after 3 years 40-50% of repatriated employees leave the company they repatriated with.
It was noted that development workers and missionaries were groups that have traditionally received de-briefing upon repatriation.

Challenges, like a reduced standard of living upon return home as well as re-entry culture shock, were discussed along with the danger of high expectations with examples of repat hopes mentioned: "home will be the same"; "I know the language and can cope easily in my own culture"; "personal relationships can easily be resumed"; "it will take me no time to adjust"; "people will value and utilize my international experience and last", but by no means least, "it will be fun"!

Areas where reality does not match the fantasy of repatriation were also covered. The main themes included individuals and families, considering the role of adapted social skills, and career reintegration. General and actionable coping strategies were also presented.  The panel discussion was broken down further into ways in which individuals and families could best manage their repatriation, adapting social skills learned during their time abroad, and best utilizing those skills for career reintegration back at the home base while accepting there can sometimes be a temporary set back.  Coping strategies for a smooth transition were also covered, with attendees being encouraged to build a RAFT (reconciliation - affirmation - farewell - think).

After the panel discussion, panelists and participants enjoyed more casual conversations and refreshments together. It was a successful evening for the FIGT panelists, volunteers, and the 30 attendees with the event ending with a raffle in which three copies of Apple Gidley's book Expat Life Slice by Slice were offered.

As with all FIGT events the dedication of volunteers helped make the occasion.  Grateful thanks to the panelists, and volunteers Denise Nickerson, Patricia Gros-Piron, and Samantha Reichbach.

Only two weeks to go before the official FIGT UK Launch Reception which is to be held on Thursday 21st, June 2012 at Said Business School, Oxford, UK.

Co-chairs Wendy Wilson and Claire Snowdon are delighted by the initial response to this event which will bring together individuals and organisations from around the UK, all of whom are engaged across a wide range of sectors relating to global mobility and global mobility issues.

The programme agenda will include guest speaker, Mary Channer, founder of Finders Keepers, Oxfordshire's premier family owned, independent property letting and management agent. Finders Keepers celebrates its 40th birthday this year and has also recently been awarded the prestigious Sunday Times Best UK Letting Agent award. Mary brings with her a wealth of professional experience in supporting what is now one of the largest international transition communities in the UK outside London. 

The presentations will be followed by a networking drinks reception. Spaces are filling up fast so if you are based in the UK and would like to attend please contact Wendy Wilson or Claire Snowdon as soon as possible to register your attendance.

For more information on the FIGT UK launch event, click here. Read more about FIGT UK on Claire Snowdon's blog.
FIGT is pleased to announce the first ever webinar FREE to members!
What: Third Culture Kids Transitioning Successfully for University
When: Thursday, June 28th at 1 PM EST
Presented by: Tina Quick, author, international speaker and FIGT Board Member
To learn more or register, click here.

Save the date for the second FIGT webinar FREE to members on Wednesday, September 5th at 10 AM EST; Going Global - Coaching with a Global Mindset, presented by Wendy Wilson.

Non FIGT members may register for $75 USD per webinar. Click here to learn more about FIGT membership, how you can save on webinars, receive discounts at the FIGT conference and more.
Being Better Than You Believe: 8 Steps To Ultimate Success
By Philip Berry, MBA MSW
On the surface, all was well with Mary. She was about 35 years old and worked for years at a federal government job in her hometown in the South. Her life was steady, predictable, and solid: a happy marriage, two wonderful children, a responsible and well-paying job, a nice house and plenty of material possessions. Everything needed to achieve the American Dream was hers, it seemed. But she was unhappy. A sense of dissatisfaction constantly nagged at her. She felt a bit like Charlie Brown of the Peanuts cartoon -- constantly walking around with a cloud over her head. Click here to download the full article.
Congratulations to FIGT President Peggy Love in her new role School Choice International's Executive Vice President of Education Services, announced recently after the SCI acquisition of the Education Advising division of Dwellworks. Peggy will provide valuable liaison expertise between the two companies during the integration phase. Alex Ruttenberg takes on the role of SCI Deputy Director of Research and Education Services.

Bob Rosing, Dwellworks' CEO, thanked both Peggy and Alex for their dedication and hard work in building the Education Advising services into what they are today, "Their passion and knowledge for education services has fueled the division and motivated EA consultants in the field".

SCI, under the leadership of Liz Perlstein, has been staunch supporter of FIGT for many years.
Thank you FIGT members and friends! The FIGT Cookbook, Where is Home? is now closed to entries and is in the editing phase thanks to the book cooking by the cookbook committee!  Look for updates as we near print/publication date, which will be in time for a slightly quirky Christmas present for those people who might not quite 'get' why we relocate around the world with our families, and encourage them to try some 'new' recipes.
It's good news month!  FIGT has been nominated for an EMMA.  The brainchild of the Forum for Expatriate Management, EMMA is to global mobility what OSCAR is to the movie industry recognizing the industry leaders, business successes and rising stars.


And we've been nominated for the Best Family Support category. The winners for the Americas EMMAs will be announced at a glittering Awards Dinner and Ball at the JW Marriot Las Vegas Resort and Spa on September 13.