President's Desk 08-10-13

From the President's Desk

After reading Sakuji Tanaka's message in the Rotary magazines regarding, "My Rotary Moment" it got me thinking of my first real step. It was when our daughter Lauren was accepted into the Youth Exchange Program (YEP) - and surprisingly enough it was only five years ago.

At the same time we were very quickly encouraged to be a part of the YEP District Committee and a few years later the Rotary Youth Program of Enrichment (RYPEN) - Committee.   As you can see Youth Programs have been our focus from the start. Last week an email was sent to all, from DGE Tony Heading looking for people to join a District Committee, let me say, "Do it!" I encourage you all to put a tick in a box and send it off, it was a fabulous time for us and we got to meet the most amazing and talented young people from here and abroad. There are many Committees, pick one that suits your interests.

Our Club's Ella was one of the YEP students we met and got to know, I could listen to her for hours chatting about her experiences in Sweden. Ella also speaks passionately about the Walk for Solar she did with the Australian Youth Climate Coalition Gold Coast. Last Wednesday she spoke at the Ashmore Rotary Club and we look forward to seeing the presentation at this Thursday Night's Forum October 11th, 2012. The response last week was overwhelming and Ella was sorry she was held up at Uni but as she is doing her last year in Biochemical Science, so I think she can be forgiven!

Lauren stepped in at the last moment and did a small piece on Kiva at last week's forum, thank you Lauren. As she was also at the Ashmore Rotary Meeting and afterwards had a Kiva Committee Meeting to discuss what the plan of attack was next. Looking at our Facebook page a challenge has been set to raise $500, started by our own Ian Yarker and quickly followed by Denise Payne, Chris J and Chris L with Ella, Elliot and Lauren also making a donation. Please keep them coming, I believe they have hit the half-way point. 

I am so happy to see this flourish of activity from our younger members with Tim Egan also securing a speaker for a future forum from Rotary Youth Leadership Awards (RYLA) - . This is another "fan-tab-ulous" program which Ella, Elliot, Lauren, Tim D and Tim E have all taken part in. That will be another great forum and please remember we are looking for people to go to these camps, RYLA is open to young people aged between 19 and 28.

Rotary Down Under also has an article on our e-Club thank you Ian for organising that, page 9 - it's a great read. In fact, the whole magazine is, and two words keep popping out to me and they were "encourage" and "foster". This is where I see my role as President is to encourage and foster the Next Gen part of our Club to be a large part of our decision making process and to encourage and foster the more experienced Members to be mentors both professionally and with Rotary, to make Rotary truly ageless and not an "old-boys" Club.

Yours in Rotary

Rick Jewson