Rotary wheel 'in motion' with influx of younger members

Rotary International logo

Rotary International - Credit: Submitted

Welcome to our first Rotary column, bringing you news from all of the nine clubs in the district.

Some people may not have heard about Rotary and those who have, are often under the mis-conception that it’s a luncheon club attended by wealthy, retired businessmen.

Well, this couldn’t be further from the truth as Rotary welcomes everyone and does not discriminate.

It offers so many opportunities for people of all ages to meet on a regular basis to enjoy friendship, networking and to plan projects that will benefit the lives of others.

It’s all about having fun and promoting good causes locally and internationally.

Admittedly, when I first joined Rotary in 2008, our club only had one other lady member and, being a forty-something, I was classed as one of the youngest.

Now, I am happy to say, that clubs have plenty of lady members and Rotary has worked hard to become much more accessible to welcome members of all ages, such as introducing e-clubs and embracing technology for digital meetings.

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This has kept the Rotary wheel 'in motion' with a definite influx of younger members in recent years. 

What is Rotary? 

Globally, Rotary has a network of 1.2 million members whose vision is to see a world where people unite and take action to create lasting change – across the globe, in our communities, and in ourselves. 

This year Tormohun Rotary Club planted bulbs at the Unesco sign and palm tree at the gateway to Torquay

This year Tormohun Rotary Club planted bulbs at the Unesco sign and palm tree at the gateway to Torquay - Credit: Kathy Uglow

There are over 1,700 clubs in Great Britain and Ireland who volunteer their time and talents to tackle challenges at home and abroad. 

For more than 110 years, Rotary's 'people of action' have used their passion, energy and intelligence to take action on sustainable projects. From literacy and peace, to water and health, we are always working to better our world.

In a nutshell, we are like-minded people who bring our expertise and skills to Rotary.

We want to give something back to our community and be part of an amazing worldwide organisation.

In doing so, we form lasting friendships while participating in fundraising activities and exciting challenges. 

On a personal note, I am proud to call myself a Rotarian and I know when visiting anywhere in the world, if I meet a fellow Rotarian, I will welcomed as a true friend.

Campaigns 

Rotary’s campaigns are plentiful and each club is encouraged to adopt their own individual programme of support.

However, one of Rotary’s biggest campaigns must surely be its End Polio Now campaign.

Launched in 1985, there were 125 polio endemic countries and hundreds of new cases every single day. 

However, now, the end goal is in sight with only two countries still reporting cases of polio: Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Just one of the ShelterBoxes that are sent out in response to a disaster

Just one of the ShelterBoxes that are sent out in response to a disaster - Credit: Submitted

Another amazing project worth noting is Rotary’s partnership with ShelterBox.

Whenever disaster hits, Rotary is always one of the first organisations to spring into action, working promptly with ShelterBox to meet the needs of those who are hit the hardest and are desperate for assistance. 

It provides emergency shelter to families who have lost their home to disaster, enabling them to rebuild their lives.

Interested in joining? Want to learn more? 

There’s no doubt that joining Rotary, through your local club, gives you the platform to make a difference through volunteering.

If you’ve got a cause you’re passionate about, or a project you want to get off the ground, Rotary is the place to turn your ideas into action. 

Within this district, there are nine Rotary clubs who meet at different times and different venues.

This means Rotary is accessible to everyone and potential members can choose whichever is the most convenient for them. 

If you’d let to know more, visit www.rotarygbi.org or contact one of the local clubs listed below: 

  • The Rotary Club of Babbacombe  and St Marychurch 
  • The Rotary Club of Brixham 
  • The Rotary Club of Paignton 
  • The Rotary Club of Preston (Torbay) 
  • The Rotary Club of Torbay Sunrise 
  • The Rotary Club of Tormohun (Torquay) 
  • The Rotary Club of Torquay 
  • The Rotary Club of Totnes 
  • The Rotary Club of Dartmouth 

Please see the advertisement on this page for contact details or email Kathy.rotary@aol.com 

Wheels are in motion

Classic cars at Staverton Fayre

Classic cars at Staverton Fayre - Credit: Kathy Uglow

Subject to the Covid restrictions, it’s full speed ahead for a classic car show organised by the Rotary Club of Totnes. 

The Classic Car Show and Autojumble will be held on the Staverton playing fields on June 27.

Around 100 cars and motorbikes are expected including Aston Martins, E-Type Jags, MGs, Triumph Stags, Austin Healey and many others. 

There will be entertainment, cream teas, a bar and a barbecue.

There is also an opportunity for commercial and charity stalls and Autojumble stalls. Commercial stalls cost £10 and charity stalls are free.

Entrance to the public will be £5 adult, £3 child, or £15 family ticket. There will be free parking and provision for blue badge holders. 

To book a place for a stall or to enter a classic car or motorcycle car, visit www.totnesrotary.co.uk. Alternatively, contact Stephen Evans on 07579 003 985, email classiccar@totnesrotary.co.uk

Recycle your unwanted mobility equipment and change a life 

PhysioNet logo

PhysioNet - Credit: Submitted

Do you or your organisation have any unwanted medical or mobility equipment? 

Rotary clubs around the Bay are supporting Physionet, a UK-based humanitarian organisation which collects surplus aids for the disabled to be shipped out to charities around the world.  

In the last ten years, 75 container loads of disability equipment has been shipped to 25 different countries.

Torbay Rotarians have now pledged their support and are calling for people who have unwanted items such as wheelchairs, crutches and walking frames to donate them for those in need.

Please contact your local Rotary club for more information and to arrange collection of any items for donation.

To find out more about Physionet, visit www.physionet.org.uk