Log in

P e a c e   a n d   U n d e r s t a n d i n g
T h r o u g h   T r a v e l  &   H o s t i n g

Log in

Future US National Conferences

January 23, 2024 6:15 AM | Bill Magargal (Administrator)

by Bill Magargal

US Servas has had a tradition of annual national conferences for quite some time. The volunteers and avid members who attend enjoy meeting other members and learning more about Servas. They are fun and energizing. Attendees give them rave reviews. Our most recent conference this past Fall in NY State was no exception, but even though this successful event had only 78 attendees. That is about 5% of our total membership, even though it was heavily subsidized, well publicized, and near NYC. 

Conferences require tons of volunteer effort to plan, arrange, and execute. Could our money and limited volunteer hours be put to better use, perhaps organizing local and regional gatherings? Should the US National conference alternate years with the SICOGA International event? Should we plan conferences two or three years in advance to reduce the conference committees' stress levels and to allow more time for members to hold the dates well in advance? Should conferences be held in the Summer when more people, especially younger members, might be able to attend? These are just a few of the questions that need clarification.  

At this point, the Board has not received any requests from any group interested in hosting a conference in 2024. Given the above questions, and the fact that time is already short for even an experienced group to stage a national event this year, unless someone steps up in the immediate future, we are very unlikely to see a national conference in 2024.

What are your thoughts with alternating years with SICOGA , or moving to regional events? Please share them with 


  • January 23, 2024 3:19 PM | Anonymous member
    SICOGA is every three years so alternating with it is not a semiannual occurance. In the past sites did not volunteer -- the office staff was aware of which areas had active local groups and with staff assistance a future conference committee reached out to local people and encouraged them to host a conference. The goal was to have sites chosen two or three years in advance. To the best of my knowledge, none of this is happening now.
    Link  •  Reply
    • January 23, 2024 6:11 PM | Anonymous member
      The most important thing is for the Board to meet in person for more than a day at least once a year. Do the conferences attract people who are potential Board members or are they identified in some other way?
      A conference is a lot of work if there isn't a staff member or experienced volunteer to do the logistics; local people do the local extras.
      Link  •  Reply
      • January 24, 2024 7:14 AM | Anonymous member
        Comment deleted
        • January 24, 2024 11:51 AM | Anonymous member
          I think this is a good idea. An email could be sent sent out 3 days ahead with the link.
          Link  •  Reply
        • January 24, 2024 11:52 AM | Anonymous member
          I think this is a good idea. An email could be sent sent out 3 days ahead with the link.
          Link  •  Reply
  • January 23, 2024 5:53 PM | Anonymous member
    I suggest a Natl conference the year before Intl; and Regional conferences the year after. No Natl conference the same year as Intl.
    Link  •  Reply
    • January 24, 2024 7:15 AM | Anonymous member
      Such a 3-year schedule sounds great! Now we need to plan to make it happen.
      Link  •  Reply
  • January 24, 2024 7:09 AM | Anonymous member
    This is a great place for us to discuss what our membership would like with regard to US SERVAS National and Regional conferences, and to remind everyone about SICOGA (SERVAS International Biennial or Triennial [or when SERVAS International gets a suitable host?] Conference).
    Link  •  Reply
  • January 24, 2024 3:29 PM | Anonymous member
    though I am one of the members not having attended a conference, I feel that completely cancelling it would not be a good idea. It's always best to meet in person and the ones that are coming to the meetings are the ones that really want to be involved. My reason for not attending so far is the time. I would have come to the last one in NY, but it happened at the same time as the annual student exchange program I run at my school.
    Link  •  Reply
  • January 27, 2024 11:40 AM | Anonymous member
    My vote is for Regional Conferences at least bi-annually, if not annually . Letting too much time go between meetings would unintentionally promote a feeling of distance from the organization. Regional conferences would be easier to attend, by definition.
    Link  •  Reply

Share This Post

Spread the word about Servas.

View More Stories

1887 Whitney Mesa Dr., #1250,

Henderson, NV 89014

Contact Us

© Copyright


Support US Servas!
Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software