By Logan Johnson, Communication Specialist for Rotary Alumni Relations
Posted on Rotary Voices Blog (Rotary International Website) December 20, 2018
the past few years, Rotary International has been promoting Reconnect Week as a
time to remind Rotary clubs of the value of reaching out and “reconnecting”
with alumni of Rotary programs like Interact, Rotaract, scholarships, Rotary
Peace Fellowships, youth exchange and other regional programs. But celebrating
alumni and making them feel welcome to your club is something you can and
should do year-round. Alumni of Rotary make great leaders and innovators and
may possess the skills you need for your next service project.
in that spirit, we collected five events that impressed us during this year’s
Reconnect Week in October to encourage you to think of ways you can reconnect
with alumni in the new year.
Alumni Chair William Inniss of Cayman Islands has made it a tradition with his
district’s alumni association to hold an annual video conference for Reconnect
Week. Since his district is made of many islands, travel between them is more
difficult for in-person meetings, so this is simply the best way to keep up.
During the meeting, members of the alumni association discuss their past
experiences and decide how best to partner with local Rotary clubs.
of the Northern Illinois Rotary Alumni Association, Rotaract Club of Chicago,
and Rotarians in the greater Chicago region came together for an evening of
networking at One Rotary Center in Evanston, Illinois. This provided alumni and
Rotaractors the opportunity to engage with Rotarians from around the region and
get to know what they are accomplishing in their clubs so they might join them.
the second year in a row, District 7600 in Virginia, USA, has made a point to
include alumni in their district conference. Not only did they have a space for
the local alumni association to welcome their new members, but they also used
Facebook Live to record a breakout session that focused on past program
experience from a Group Study Exchange team member.
your time as president of a Rotary or Rotaract club, you learn a lot about
leadership. The Rotaract Club of Patan in Nepal recognized this and invited 10
past presidents back to the club to share the wisdom from their time as
president and past projects they worked on. This led to discussion about the
future of the club and how they can expand their potential alongside local
5. Rotary Club of Invercargill Sunrise, New Zealand – Alumni video updates
Rotary Club of Invercargill requested short, 1-2 minute video updates from a
handful of the youth exchange alumni they had sponsored, that they then shared
with members on Facebook. The alumni talked about long-lasting relationships
with their host families and how the exchange shaped them. When alumni are
unable to visit a club meeting, video updates like these are helpful in
maintaining a connection with alumni despite long distances.
When you reach out to alumni and invite them to your club meetings and include them in projects, you strengthen their ties and remind them of how Rotary is reshaping lives. You also expand your network and secure support for future work. Make it a resolution in 2019 to reach out to alumni in your district. Contact your District Alumni Chair, or email email@example.com to get started today.