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Third Culture Care symposium returning to Providence
2016-05-04
 
An ad hoc group of churches, schools, and mission agencies have come together to sponsor a third culture care symposium later this month in Winnipeg and Otterburne.
 
“Caring Cross-Culturally: Essentials for Third Culture Support” will take place Friday, May 27 at Winnipeg’s Fort Gary MB Church and Saturday, May 28 at Otterburne’s Providence University College and Theological Seminary.
 
“A basic reality of life for people who move from one country to another is what is sometimes called a ‘third culture’: the culture within each person created by a mixture of the country they come from and the country they live in as an immigrant,” explains Dr. Daryl Climenhaga, Associate Professor of Global Studies at Providence. “This is true for missionaries, for business families, and for immigrants to Manitoba—in short, for expatriates of all kinds.”
 
Climenhaga says third culture families often live with difficulties and challenges unique to the expatriate experience. The symposium, in its second year, is designed to address those distinctive needs and is intended for all those who are concerned with the mission of the church, whether missionaries or those who support them from their home base.
 
“More broadly,” says Climenhaga, “it is meant for anyone who knows what it means to be an expatriate.”
 
Duncan Westwood, who has more than three decades of expatriate care in Great Britain, North America, and Southeast Asia, will be the symposium’s primary resource. Possessing an interdisciplinary doctoral degree in Clinical Psychology, Cross-Cultural Expatriate Studies, and Spiritual Direction/Formation, he has provided care at the three, critical stages of the expatriate life cycle: pre-departure, overseas, and re-entry/repatriation.
 
“Having crossed multiple cultures with his wife, Olwyn, and family, Duncan is acutely aware of the diverse challenges facing expatriates,” Climenhaga points out.
 
Paul Dyck, the National Team Leader for Canadian MK Network, says supporting cross-cultural workers and their children in transition is a “substantial need” facing modern-day missions.
 
“Many families repatriating to Canada feel alone, lost, weary, distanced, not understood and are struggling to make sense of a culture they once knew,” he says. “They need care and support.”
 
Sponsors of “Caring Cross-Culturally: Essentials for Third Culture Support” include Providence University College and Theological Seminary, Mennonite Church Canada, Mennonite Brethren Mission, Avant, TeachBeyond, Go Mission (EMMC), Evangelical Mennonite Conference, Canadian MK Network, Outreach Canada and various, individual congregations.
 
The cost for the weekend is $89 per person and $165 per couple, and there is a special offer for the children of missionaries: $50 per person and $90 per couple.
 
Further information is available at www.canadianmk.net/events or by contacting Daryl Climenhaga at Daryl.Climenhaga@prov.ca.
 
(Top to bottom: Dr. Daryl Climenhaga; Duncan and Olwyn Westwood.)
 
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