Recreational - Vocational Fellowships|
Each fellowship has a forum through which members interact. Every fellowship sends a newsletter to members at least once a year. But other means of encounter differ widely, reflecting the nature of each fellowship:
- Computer Users communicate with each other on-line;
- Amateur Radio enthusiasts take to the airwaves;
- and Rotary Pin and License Plate collectors spot each other everywhere.
Some of the best fellowship opportunities occur when members meet face-to-face.
Among the most convivial are the mobile fellowships, such as Motorcycling, which plans dozens of rallies every year. Adding zest to fellowship, the Golf fellowship holds an annual tournament, rotating it among the regions, allowing an ever-growing membership to meet and compete.
Although members keep active all year long, fellowships truly come into their own at Rotary's annual convention. With Rotarians gathered from all parts of the globe, many fellowships take the opportunity to hold their annual meeting. At their colorful booths and displays at the International Convention, they invite other Rotarians to learn about and join their fellowships.
Whatever your vocation or avocation, you are likely to find a Rotary Recreational or Vocational Fellowship to match it. And if you do not find a fellowship that sparks your interest, you might want to start one.
Membership in the fellowships is open to all Rotarians. But whether joining or starting a fellowship, keep in mind membership obligations as well as advantages. Fellowships must satisfy criteria for recognition by Rotary International, including:
1.a valid purpose stated in a constitution or bylaws;
2.the publication of a newsletter or other forum;
3.membership drawn from three or more countries.
Most fellowships require minimal dues to defray expenses.
Recreational fellowships traditionally have used their hobbies to serve others:
The Skiing fellowship donates profits from ski events to an organization which supports skiing for the disabled.
The Flying Rotarians ferry medical personnel and supplies.
The Canoeing Rotarians organize cleanups of polluted rivers
For vocational fellowships, too, service has been a primary focus:
- The Ophthalmology fellowship organized a conference on eye surgery and prevention of blindness in developing countries.
- The Conflict Resolution fellowship helped to send a noted jurist to Northern Ireland to assist in regional mediation talks.
- The International Trade fellowship helped Rotarians respond to a disaster in the Philippines, assisting entry into the country of donated medical supplies and drugs.
- With their international links, fellowships can provide unique service to the global community. Their projects strengthen not only their own fellowships, but the image of Rotary worldwide.