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Why I Joined Rotary

Why Would You Join Belrose Rotary?

Why would I want to join Rotary? Is it for me? Is it a bunch of weird people who have weird rituals and lots of obligations? Aren’t there heaps of rules like attending every meeting? I have a full on job, will I have enough time?

These are typical questions that anyone who might be thinking about joining Rotary would ask themselves. I did too, except I did know some Rotarians and knew they weren’t weird! I joined Belrose Rotary Club formally in October 2017 having attended a few meetings from August. I had previously been a member of a Service Club in the UK called Round Table (Apex Australia is the equivalent here) and I loved my years in that Club, it gave me a lot of fun, fellowship and fulfillment, but with the age rule which meant I had to leave at age 45, there was always a finite time limit to it.

I moved with my family to Australia a number of years ago, and did think about joining the local Rotary Club but was put off by one of the rules – weekly meeting attendance. I have a very demanding job and did not think I could commit to attending weekly meetings. I had no problems with the Rotary concept of Service Above Self, the Aims and Objects of Rotary are almost identical to that of Apex / Round Table, and I was very used to that.

So, in August 2017, my wife Julie and I went to a Belrose Rotary Breakfast Meeting to try the Club out. What we found was a group of people of various age groups, who were very welcoming and with a real focus on Youth, something which Julie and I have been involved in, not least the bringing up of our children. The meeting was fun, and for sure we wanted to find out more, so we went to the next meeting, which was an evening meeting at the regular meeting place of the Club. The more meetings we went to, the more welcome we felt and it was not long before both we and the Club were talking about us becoming members.

But, how about those rules?

Well, Rotary has had to modernise its thinking and there is no hard and fast obligation to attend meetings but guess what – when you enjoy what you do, you want to do more, and I do find us attending a lot more meetings than we originally thought we would. The meetings are usually a meal followed by an activity, which may be a Speaker, or a visit to an establishment, or something else. They are fun, and above all I get to meet a bunch of my (new) mates every week with a common purpose. We do have a number of projects outside of the meetings, you may have seen us at the Borgnis Street Davidson Christmas Lights, helping raise significant money for Bear Cottage. You might have taken your young ones to the Easter Egg Hunt in Borgnis Street Fire Station, another event that we run.

There are a lot of things that we do, but always it is up to you to be part of it. We recognise that not everyone can participate in everything, but those that like to participate do so and guess what, the more you do, the more you want to do and the more you get out of being a member of a worldwide non sectarian, non political organisation of 1.3 Million Members!! If you travel, you are always welcome to a Rotary Meeting if there is one where you are. (In my case 2 weeks after formally becoming a Rotarian, I went to a Rotary Meeting near where I was staying in the Netherlands, which was a lot of fun.)

Joining Rotary is about Service, but more importantly it is around fellowship, mateship and having fun with a group of people who are like minded.

Why would YOU join Rotary? Why wouldn’t YOU join Rotary? Come along to one of our meetings, you have absolutely nothing to lose and all to gain!

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