This week we welcome Kim Bush from Eurobodalla Shire Council and Angela Muir from Narooma Public School for the launch of our ‘Friends of Rotary’ initiative.
We know from experience that potential members are often daunted by the prospect of joining our Club. Some feel the time commitment is too great, especially attending weekly meetings and helping out at fundraising activities. Some may feel that we’re quite old and formal in the way we conduct our business, while some don’t really know what Rotary does. Some potential members are turned off when the first question they’re asked when they visit us is ‘Would you like to join?’
The idea behind our ‘Friends of Rotary’ initiative is to give people in our community, especially younger people, the opportunity to ‘taste’ Rotary, find out a little about how we operate and what we do. It provides a way for them to participate even though they may not wish to join the club as a Rotarian with the rights and responsibilities of membership. Rather, becoming a Friend of Narooma Rotary establishes a formal association with our Club with an avenue to participate in Club activities.
The commitment to becoming a ‘Friend’ is simple: agree to come to the occasional meeting and to help from time to time with various activities. What’s in it for us? We learn more about a wider network of people in the community; hopefully over time our Friends will become Rotarians and in turn bring others into our great Club. Thank you to Lynda, Sandra and others who have helped design this initiative.
The Renewable Energy Expo committee is busy finalising arrangements for the upcoming Expo. Please keep the last Saturday in November free and don’t forget the dinner and forum on the evening of the 25th. Please let the committee know this week if you will be attending. Frank has also produced a video to advertise the event. See below.
Have a great week.
The Week that Was
It was lovely to have Rod Walker back last week after two months away, mainly in Canada. We were also joined by several guests: guest speaker Catherine Boomer and her husband Martin; Angie’s guests Cathie Muller, Maureen Trees, Helen Smith and Robyn Miller; and Chris’ guests Julian and Margaret Domaracki. It all made for another great meeting.
Our guest speaker
Our guest speaker Catherine Boomer is World Vision International’s Senior Adviser on Advocacy and External Engagement. She gave us a fascinating insight into World Vision (WV), a Christian NGO that focuses on children and families in 63 developing countries and 19 developed countries. It employs 50,000 staff worldwide, mostly people in countries where they are working, and a budget of over $2b.
She spoke briefly about WV’s well known child sponsorship, their long term sustainable development programmes and their humanitarian and emergency relief, before focussing on their advocacy. WV’s advocacy involves continuing to give aid while also working to convince countries to ‘do what is right’. They work at the local, national, regional and global levels, often in association with other major international agencies and sometimes in partnership with other ‘faith-based’ organisations.
Catherine said many countries where they work may have great policies, but often they fail in the implementation, sometimes because of a lack of money or of appropriately trained people.
She gave several examples of WV’s advocacy, often where there is sometimes a discrepancy between what people’s entitlements are under the law and the reality. Sometimes the solution can be found locally. For example, in one town the school was supposed to have five teachers but it only had two and the result was the children were not learning. The reason was a lack of accommodation for teachers so the town built a house for teachers.
While there are many different approaches to advocacy, WV’s approach is more about collaboration and dialogue and holding governments accountable. She spoke of the importance of listening to children’s voices and empowering them, and of training young people to advocate for what they want to see happen in their world.
President Bob received a lovely note from Catherine after Thursday’s meeting.
I just wanted to say thank to you and the members of Narooma Rotary for making me so welcome last night. It was a great evening.
I am interested in your Friends of Rotary evening next week and being added to your mailing list. I hope to see you and the other members again soon.
Renewable Energy Expo
Frank has produced a great little film clip promoting the Expo which is getting quite a few hits on our Facebook pages (Expo and Club’s), Narooma News online and Beagle News Weekly and showing at the Kinema. Make sure you share it with your Facebook friends.
On RDU magazines
Chris O’Brien asks members to please bring along your old Rotary Down Under magazines for Lynn to include in the show bags for the Expo.
Meet the Midwives
We are all invited to meet visiting Midwives from Fiji, Tonga, Samoa, Cook Islands and Kiribati in Batemans Bay during their two weeks leadership training in D9710 in a few weeks’ time. They will be undertaking a leadership program specifically designed by the University of Canberra and the Australian College of Midwives.
They are hosted by Rotarians around Canberra. They will spend their free weekend visiting Batemans Bay and surrounds, and will make a presentation to Rotarians at the Soldiers Club on Saturday 18 November (a week before the Expo). We are all invited – 6.30pm for 7pm, for a two course meal, cost $30pp. More information and registration details will soon be on the District Website; otherwise PDG Maureen Manning, President of Batemans Bay Club, is the contact.