Exclusive Interview with Vijai D’Cunha
Native Parish: St. Peter’s Church, Barkur, Udupi
Profession: Sales & Marketing
Spouse: Sunita Furtado
Children: Johan and Zephan
Sunil Victor Furtado, the president for the year 2017-18 is the man at the helm of affairs. He is very upbeat and expressed satisfaction at the progress of the preparations for the function. We met Sunil Furtado ahead of the inaugural day to understand his thoughts and bring out the charming flavors of ideas that would shape the new era through Team-26. He was honest with his views but robust in his conviction. Here are the excerpts from an interview with him.
1. What is it about this position that is of interest to you?
Ans: The call to serve the community prompted me to take up the post of MCCP president, although I was skeptical in the beginning. The role of being MCCP’s president is challenging and carries a lot of responsibility with it. Most importantly, he/she has to live up to the expectations of the community members.
Being an energetic person with a positive outlook, I have always thrived on challenges. As a president, one needs to understand people, their sentiments, their inhibitions, and bring them all together under one umbrella. Fortunately, there have been many individuals who have bolstered my confidence by promising to support me and my team throughout the year. I also have a highly motivated and energetic team which gives me further assurance and boosts to my morale.
I personally feel that MCCP is a medium that God has chosen for me to serve the society. I am confident that as president, I will be able to do justice to the faith that the people have in me and I will carry out my responsibilities with complete honesty, sincerity, and dedication.
2.What challenges are you looking for in this association as a president of Team-26?
Ans: As I have stated earlier, I welcome challenges. We are up against many odds to run the show. As president, I will strive to maintain the high standards that have been set by previous committees and endeavor to take it a few levels higher despite various constraints that prevail in Oman at present. We need to have a vision of looking beyond the present and work towards achieving a better tomorrow.
At the same time, I want to shift the focus of MCCP from being a cultural and entertainment provider to involve the members in activities such as life skill development, social responsibility and also spiritual growth. To bring about this change will be my biggest challenge as the new president of MCCP.
3.What are your development areas – things you are trying to improve?
Ans: It is my thinking that the feeling of being a Mangalorean does not come purely because of our common language, common native place or common culture. It is much deeper and that it is our values and ethos that have got inculcated in us being Mangaloreans.
A large number Mangaloreans are now scattered all over the world. Their children, as well as grandchildren, have now grown and they need to be brought into the community. They will participate actively only when they can be engaged and get connected with what is going on in the association. I strongly feel that if we don’t bring our next generation into the community, an association like MCCP has no future.
Our youth today are very talented. To achieve their wholehearted participation, we may need to modify our programs by making them more vibrant, lively and much more interactive. We may have to simplify the language so that they can understand. We also need to encourage them and instill confidence so that they come forward and showcase their talents in various fields.
I know this change will not happen overnight. But we need to make a beginning in order to carry on the legacy of MCCP for many more years to come.
4.Describe your most effective communication method with members.
As we all know, the whole world has shrunk and has become one big Global Village. The way we work and communicate have all changed with most effective and faster modes taking over. In such an environment, every organization/ association has to change and adapt according to the changing times.
With that perspective, my team is planning to make MCCP more modern by adopting the latest resources for connecting with community members. More details will be revealed on a regular basis to the members.
5.What are the plans and preparation for the events during your tenure?
Ans: A variety of programs has been lined up by Team-26 for the year that will cover a wide range of areas. The organization aims at making the forthcoming year a memorable one by bringing more and more families to take part in the events thereby strengthening the bond within the Mangalorean community in Oman.
The inaugural ceremony will feature the blend of modern and traditional culture with several dance programs, skits, musical entertainments, etc. The 26th year of the organization will be celebrated with the theme ‘Share our similarities, celebrate our differences’, which is a thought provocating statement and aims to bring the entire community together.
It is clear that the new president, who spoke passionately about simplicity, humility , nd spirituality during the last annual day has some groundbreaking plans for MCCP, which would change the course of this quarter century old association and herald a new era.