by Carol Steen
This is the second installment in our series Rotary Fellowships.
The Rotary Fellowship Handbook gives this history:
Rotary Fellowships are international, independently organized groups of Rotarians, Rotarian spouses, and Rotaractors who share a common vocation or recreational interest. Rotary Fellowships give their members the opportunity to have fun, make new friends around the world, and enhance their experience in Rotary.
Rotary Fellowships began informally in 1928 when Rotarians with a shared interest in the international language Esperanto joined together. In 1947, a group of Rotarian boating enthusiasts began flying the Rotary flag from their crafts, calling themselves the International Yachting Fellowship of Rotarians (find more information on this fellowship below) which now holds the distinction of being the oldest continuing fellowship. The scope of fellowships has changed significantly over the years, but their purpose remains the same: to unite Rotarians in friendship and provide opportunities to enjoy favorite recreational or professional activities.
Touring Horseback Riders Fellowship
License Plate Collectors Fellowship
License plate collectors have organized the Rotarian Automobile License Plate Collectors Fellowship. This group brings together Rotarians from around the world who share this hobby. More information is available by contacting the secretary at firstname.lastname@example.org
International Fellowship of Yachting Rotarians
The International Fellowship of Yachting Rotarians (IFYR), not only the oldest but perhaps the largest of Rotary Fellowships, boasts a worldwide membership of nearly 3000 members. The group has about 100 active fleets in 22 countries: Argentina, Australia, Belgium, Brazil, British Virgin Islands, Canada, Finland, France, Germany, Great Britain, Ireland, Italy, Japan, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Philippines, Slovenia, South Africa, Spain, Sweden, Turkey, and the USA.
Each fleet plans its own events, including cruises, regattas, service activities and social events. Also, the IYFR holds an annual general meeting in conjunction with International Rotary Conventions, and a post-convention cruise.
More information can be found on the group's website: www.iyfr.net
Rotarians of Amateur Radio
* Carol Steen is a Member and Past President of Rotary eClub One.