JUNE is FELLOWSHIP MONTH
The final month of every Rotary year is Fellowship Month. This is a fitting designation since fellowship is particularly to the forefront with changeovers being very much the priority in June.
Fellowship is of course one of the five core values of Rotary, the others being service, diversity, integrity and leadership.
Rotary DEFINES Fellowships in many areas, which are based on a friendly association of people who share a common interest, or more broadly as a group of people meeting to pursue a shared interest or aim.
Rotary Fellowship Groups are designated as autonomous, international groups of Rotarians, Rotarian spouses, and Rotaractors who join together to:
• Share a common interest in worthwhile recreational activities (sports, hobbies, etc.)
• Further their vocational development through acquaintance with others of the same profession
• Make new friends around the world
• Explore new opportunities for service
• Have fun and enhance their Rotary experience
There are nearly 70 formal Rotary Fellowships catering for interests from Chess to Cricket and Stamps to Skiing. The following link will give you more information about how to join or start a Group:
Paul Harris was looking for friendship when he conceived the idea of Rotary. He wanted to develop friendships that went beyond the cordial relationships of business connections. It was of course a very different society in those days and people typically socialized by joining special interest clubs or sporting associations. The idea that Paul Harris had was a club based on “a very simple plan of mutual cooperation and informal friendship such as all of us had once known in our villages.” It was also based on the expectation of reciprocal trade between the best single representatives of each business. As Rotary grew so did the sense of special relationships. Again, it is hard for people in 2014 to imagine life in 1914 but a Rotary meeting and Rotary service was pervading. The Rotary lunch, and the closeness of Rotarians and their families meant a special kind of fellowship, in which all those definitions of fellowship applied.
Networking has been suggested as a better representation of what is intended by the word fellowship. If I have been able to adequately able to define fellowship it will quickly be seen that networking is in fact only a part of what fellowship is about. In fact it is a more self-serving aspect of fellowship. An accepted definition seems to be the exchange of information or services among individuals, groups, or institutions; specifically: the cultivation of productive relationships for employment or business.
Whatever word individual Rotarians may feel most comfortable with, fellowship is alive and well in Rotary and will be celebrated most demonstrably over the next month and into July as club officers change over and all Rotarians recommit to Service Above Self.
Rotary District 9800 encompasses the City of Melbourne, the Melbourne CBD, surrounding and bay side suburbs and country clubs that stretch as far as Echuca Moama on the Murray River in northern Victoria.