Yesterday was a great day.
Dr. Roberto and I met with the Superior General of a 400-year old religious order working in over 90-countries around the world to advance health for the poor. We met in the headquarters of the Order - just off the Piazza della Rotonda where the Pantheon sits. The headquarters is housed in a giant concrete building contiguous to the Santa Maria Maddalena Church. It was amazing. An ancient building with narrow stairwells and dark corridors. Every wall was adorned with magnificent works of art. Even the portico had a most exquisite fountain. The building was a living monument to history.
Our meeting was an opportunity to introduce the Superior General, the elected head for the entire Order, to the work of HBI. We talked about the Ines Project and our hope for helping communities adopt the program to better support the work of advocating with families who have children living with disabilities or chronic medical challenges. We talked about the philosophy of HBI and our hope for building bridges of collaboration.
Much to my surprise, the Superior General instantly resonated with the work of HBI and our Ines Project. In fact, within the first twenty minutes of our meeting he was offering ideas on how we might partner together to include the Ines Project in specific areas of work for the Order. It was a really productive meeting.
Roberto and I left the meeting exhausted. Although we both felt totally invigorated and excited for the new partnership, the few days we've been in Rome have been filled with meetings and the 9-hour time difference has made our schedule intense. We decided to go back to the hotel and rest.
After an extended rest - what was suppose to be 90-minutes turned into 3-hours - we decided to resume our walking tour of Rome. In many ways visiting this marvelous city for work brings a very different perspective. Roberto and I both decided that one way we could bring a "tourist perspective" to our trip was to take selfie photos wherever we went.
So, while our efforts are squarely focused on building bridges - we will continue the Selfie Tour of Rome over the next week. Stay tuned for more updates - and thank you so much for your continued support of HBI.
The HBI Blog is a rotating journal from our staff. Our Blog is a series of messages from the field, insights from our work, and lessons in service.