Blueprint for welcoming Rotaractors into the family

John Marvin Leonor has fun in a foam pit during a fellowship event including the Rotaract clubs of New Rise Kalookan North and Zamboanga City West at the ABS-CBN Studio Experience in September.

By John Marvin Leonor, Rotaract Club of New Rise Kalookan North, Philippines

The first word that comes to mind when I think about our sponsor Rotary club is family. It is our greatest honor to serve our community alongside the Rotary Club of Kalookan North. Whenever anyone asks me what our greatest strength is as a Rotaract club, I can proudly say it is the active and strong partnership with our Rotary club.

The importance of this partnership cannot be underestimated. Rotary clubs have the ability to make Rotaractors feel they belong to this huge family of Rotary and are an integral part of it. I feel fortunate our Rotary club has made it such a priority, and hope by sharing this it will inspire other clubs to do the same.

Kalookan North Rotary organizes several activities which always involve members of both clubs. Some of the usual activities include the annual induction of new club officers, a teambuilding activity, and a Christmas party. Last year, we were invited to their annual Dr. Martin’s Cup, initiated by one of their charter members. It includes several games designed to test our teambuilding skills.

Simply put, there is no separation or boundary between us. They make sure that we, as Rotaractors, are their ‘partners’ in service, not just ‘assistants’ in service. We put our heart and soul into joining their programs and it is one of the most satisfying feelings to see our beloved Rotarians amongst us in large numbers to motivate and support us all the way.

They supported us during our recently-concluded Project HOPE (Healing Our People through Education), a three-month extensive workshop designed to help an estimated 130 children in custody due to conflicts with the law or drugs. The children receive professional mentoring to restore positive values and bring about physical and mental rehabilitation.

With the help of the Rotary club, we designed modules that we call Life Kits that capture the fundamental principles of the program. We solicited sponsorship from other Rotarians, which allowed us to produce even more of these modules and hand them over to agencies working with troubled youth in other districts. A subsequent project is focusing on training and empowering future stakeholders and volunteers to be able to advance the objectives of the effort further, helping even more children experience a new life.

The Rotary Club of Kalookan North regularly takes time at their meetings to recognize the work that we do. It is a great morale boost. In every moment of our Rotaract lives, we need Rotarians that will guide, mentor, and support us along the way.

With the help of our Rotary Club, we are learning the good values and character that will define us as the best Rotaractors we can be, and hopefully, to be inspiring Rotarians in the future.

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