Special Announcement



From the Presidents' Desk—Open House Address

Welcome everyone,

It is a great pleasure to welcome you all here, in the lair of the World Bank Family Network. Thank you for visiting us today.

WBFN --- A rather unique animal.

I truly admire the graphics designers who capture in one single image complex concepts. The protection of the umbrella, creating a safe space despite a bad weather. 

The community, as diverse as the colors of a rainbow, being at the same time the crowd protected and the umbrella. The umbrella existing only thanks to the unity of all the parts that constitute it…

Unity in Diversity… The World Bank Family Network in one image! We as WBG families are truly lucky to have this umbrella, and to have the opportunity to stand safely together under it.

I do believe this umbrella is also highly beneficial for the bank as an organization in the pursuit of its mission. The safe space it offers to WBG families is a huge asset.

But today, I would like to ask you for a favor. We still hear far too often within the bank: “Family Network? Never heard about it, what is it”


“I wish I had known earlier about the welcoming and the spouses’ orientation, about the professional support, about the Family counseling services, about the social gatherings, it would have made things so much easier, it was so tough alone…”

No World Bank Group Family should be left struggling alone.  Anywhere.

We want to make sure each of them knows about WBFN, about this community of people supporting each other… We all walk the same path, face the same kind of challenges. And WBFN capitalizes 47 years of experience on how to overcome them.

We witness regularly the impact on our members to realize that struggling is part of the journey for many of us, the peace of mind it is for them to belong and to share with others their questions and concerns.

So, please, please, spread the word. Speak about WBFN. Be an ambassador.

We want to make sure each partner, each spouse is given the choice to join or not this community and access its social and professional support.

We have here in the room several WBFN team members. Go and meet them, ask them about WBFN its mission, its programs.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of them. The teams, spouses and partners, giving their time to put together programs and resources for our community, providing support to their peers, here and in country offices.  

Without all of them, all of you, uniting together, none of what WBFN does could be achieved.

A huge thank you also to our partners. Without your collaboration, without your support and your advices, lots of what we do would not be possible.

The challenges are great but all together, united in diversity, I am confident we can address them. We are the umbrella.

And last, but certainly not least, we will never thank enough Mimi, Paul and Cat, who are the heart of WBFN. Taking care of us all year long, making sure everything runs smoothly. You three are a blessing for the Families of the World Bank Group. You are the pole of the umbrella allowing it to be high enough to protect us all.

I think I have spoken enough, and I am sure I am not the only one looking forward to listening to the concert and tasting the delicious meal that has been prepared for us.

Speaking of what, please give a huge round of applause for the Open House team who put this event together to welcome us all today, taking care of every detail, rearranging and decorating the space and cooking for us…

I will stop here and invite you to get to know each other, learn more about WBFN and enjoy!