DGNews

DG Dave’s January Newsletter

Dave’s Diary 

The Monthly Newsletter of the District Governor

22nd December 2012

Introduction

As I make a start on this Newsletter on 22nd December and look back over the last six months I realise just what a contribution Rotary makes to our communities, locally, nationally and internationally. I have attended so many activities that I have lost count – and been invited to many more that I have not been able to attend. Gail and I have had a thoroughly fantastic time. Yes, there are downs as well as ups, but overall what I have seen from the 58 Clubs in District 1220 has been very positive.

We are now half way through this Rotary year and shortly to start the “downhill run home” so to speak. During the next few months the annual round of training and familiarisation for incoming District Officers, Club Presidents and Club Officers will get under way, re-enforcing our cyclical approach to Rotary.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has helped me in any way during my period in office so far.

Club Visioning

Following the item about Club Visioning in my November Newsletter, Noel Harrison (Membership) and I were extremely pleased and impressed by the number of Rotarians who came forward to volunteer their time, expertise and vocational abilities to act as members of the Visioning Team. As a direct result we now have sufficient volunteers to get their training off the ground and plans are being made for this to take place very early in the new year.

Many thanks to all those who stepped forward. Let’s hope that their time and effort is not wasted.

If you believe that your club could benefit from the impetus of chance that Club Visioning will bring about, then now is the time to make your case to Noel. I believe that so many Clubs are now looking critically at themselves with a with to improving, updating and recruiting that there is likely to be competition be be among the first few clubs to benefit from this scheme. So, please get in early if you are interested.

Rotary Day – 23rd February 2013

The District has not made any grand plans to celebrate Rotary Day on 23rd February. We have left it for each Club to take whatever steps it feels are appropriate for the event. I do still have left quite a number of spare boxes of pin-on crocuses that can be used in street or supermarket collections etc. The suggested minimum donation being £1 this would give a 75 pence per crocus profit. It is hoped that this symbol of polio eradication will become as common as the daffodil is for Marie Curie etc.

The crocuses will not achieve a profit in my garage and so I would dearly like to get them all out to clubs during the next month. If you would like a box please let me know and I will make the appropriate arrangements.

Diary Dates

Monday 4th February 2013 District Officer Preparation Session at The Novotel 7pm for 7.15pm
Sunday 17th February 2013 Presidents Elect Planning Seminar at The Derbyshire Hotel  8.45am till 1pm (Bacon sandwiches on arrival)
Wednesday 13th March 2013 District Foundation Link Evening at The Civic Centre Mansfield 7pm for 7.30pm
Sunday 24th March 2013 Paul Harris Fellows Lunch
Wednesday 27th March 2013 District Council Meeting at The Novotel 7.30pm
Sunday 16th June 2013 Rotary and Inner Wheel Thanksgiving Service at All Saints Parish Church Church Street Ripley at 3pm. Refreshments afterwards.

Christmas and New Year Greetings

Having kept my Newsletter deliberately short this month, may I please close it by taking the opportunity on behalf of Gail, myself and the rest of the clan who came to Southport (Sarah, Craig, Xanthe, Sebastian, Nicola, Chris, Maddie and Francesca) to wish all Rotarians in District 1220 and their wider families a thoroughly relaxing and enjoyable Christmas and a healthy and prosperous New Year.

In the midst of all the celebrations, let us not forget what Christmas is really about – give a thought to the real meaning of Christmas.

See you all in the New Year

Dave Ashley

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DG Dave’s December Newsletter

Dave’s Diary 

The Monthly Newsletter of the District Governor

30th November 2012

Re-Districting

Perhaps I am getting paranoid but I seem to be eating, drinking and sleeping Re- Districting. As you are aware “Version 3” of the Re-Districting proposals were circulated to clubs recently, leaving very little time for them to be properly considered before I had to take the views of Clubs in the District to The RIBI General Council for a vote on the subject on 26th November.

Realising that time was limited I informed clubs that if I did not hear anything from them to the contrary before attending General Council, I would take this as a vote for the plan. Several clubs did in fact send me responses, all of which were favourable to the plan. My thanks to them for this.

At the General Council the proposal was fully debated (some may say over debated !) and a vote was taken as to whether that Version should be accepted and forwarded to RI. At the conclusion of the debate there was an overwhelming vote in favour of the proposals, including “Phase 2” of the plan. In the end I voted in favour of the proposals.

This plan will now be forwarded to RI for their consideration in January.

Club Visioning

Over the last ten years, membership of Rotary within RIBI has fallen by over 10%. At the same time our age profile has been increasing year on year. Whilst we have been quite robust in our recruitment of new Rotarians this has not kept pace with the rate of people leaving the organisation. This situation is not unique to these islands. It has been happening elsewhere in the world.

In an attempt to reverse this trend, during the last few years a process called “Club Visioning” has been used in a number of countries including Australia, the United States and France. In these countries it has been successful in making clubs more vibrant, more attractive to potential new members and has given existing members a new “buzz”. It has driven up recruitment and at the same time reduced losses of existing members.

This process is now being made available within RIBI and I have indicated that I would like clubs in District 1220 to take it up if they feel that it might help them to overcome problems that they may be experiencing. A number of clubs have already expressed an interest in it.

In order to take it forward we need, as a matter of urgency, to set up a team of Rotarians to implement it. Such Rotarians ideally would fulfil the following criteria:-

  • Have time available to devote to it (up to 2 – 3 hours per week)
  • Be flexible in the times they can devote (different clubs – different times of day)
  • Prepared to attend a Training Session for the scheme (venue to be decided)
  • Able to commit to the process for a period of at least one to two years
  • Some experience preferred of presentation and/or facilitation skills
  • Some experience of interview techniques would be an advantage
  • Be able to start early in 2013
  • Most importantly – a positive outlook and a desire to help Rotary succeed.

If you have the qualities that we are looking for, or if indeed you are willing to learn and want to help, please contact Rtn. Noel Harrison (details in Directory) asap – in fact NOW.

Diary Dates

Sunday, 9th December 2012 Rotary and Inner Wheel Carol service at St. Peter’s Church, Ravenshead at 3pm
Tuesday, 11th December 2012 District Council Meeting at Novotel, Long Eaton at 7.30pm
Monday, 4th February 2013 District Officer Training Session at The Novotel at 7pm for 7.15pm
Sunday, 17th February 2013 Presidents Elect Training at The Derbyshire Hotel (morning)
Wednesday, 13th March 2013 District Foundation Link Evening at The Civic Centre, Mansfield at 7pm for 7.30pm
Sunday, 24th March 2013 Paul Harris Fellows Lunch
Wednesday, 27th March 2013 District Council Meeting at The Novotel at 7.30pm
Sunday, 16th June 2013 Rotary and Inner Wheel Thanksgiving Service at All Saints parish Church, Church Street, Ripley at 3pm. Refreshments afterwards

Sponsored Walk by District Governor and others – “H2H Walk”

In order to support Bluebell Wood Hospice and Rainbows Hospice I am planning to do a sponsored walk from Bluebell Wood in South Sheffield to Rainbows in Loughborough. The planned dates are Friday 3rd May 2013 to Monday 6th May 2013 (May Day Bank Holiday). The District Sergeant at Arms, Owen Briggs, and others have already committed to joining me. Any other Rotarians (or indeed non-Rotarians) are welcome to join us, either for the whole walk or just for a part of it. We shall be finalising and circulating the route shortly.

I have set myself a target of raising £5,000 from the walk. The idea is to ask some clubs to hold events along the route of the walk as we pass through their area, mainly during the evenings on 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th but at other times as well if they fit the walk route.

Would anyone who wants to assist in any way, either walking, organising an event,or in any other way please drop me an email to dave.gailashley@tiscali.co.uk

Let’s just hope for dry weather

I have donations of £750 each for the two hospices. Should any club wish to have talks from either hospice or want to make a donation then the contact numbers are for Rainbows – Rtn Caroline Rossin of Newark Castle Club and for Bluebell Wood -Emma Vizor on 07899 845831 or 01909 517368.

Rotary Foundation

Just a quick reminder please to clubs that donations to Rotary Foundation and to the Polio appeal are still urgently needed. Please don’t ignore our own charity that does so much good in the world or the campaign to eradicate polio. I now have boxes of 50 or 100 pin on crocuses for clubs to sell. They cost £12.50p and £25 each respectively and the suggested minimum donation per crocus is £1. That gives a profit to Foundation of £75 on a box of 100. I shall be bringing those that have been ordered and the spare ones to the District Council meeting on 11th December.

Dave Ashley

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DG Dave’s November Newsletter

Dave’s Diary 

The Monthly Newsletter of the District Governor

31st October 2012

DG 2012-2013 David Ashley

Group Study Exchange Team

The Group Study Exchange Team from Nepal has now left us and flown back home, no doubt full of good words to say about their stay in the District. At the de-briefing meeting and their Farewell Party on 19th November, Team Leader Nugal and team members Suyesh, Dipika, Shresna and Roshani all spoke very highly indeed of their host Rotarian families and of the content of their programme. I would like to thank everyone from Rob Gray who coordinated the whole event, the area coordinators, the host families and all others who were involved in the arrangements in any way for the excellent arrangements that resulted in such a great final GSE Team visit to District 1220.

District Conference

The District Conference, another major event in the Rotary calendar has also now passed for another year. Numbers attending the Conference were considerably down this year on previous years (about 700 attended including about 400 Rotarians) and we need to look closely at the Annual Conference for the future.

Organisers of the Conference have to prepare a budget based on the number of people attending and when numbers fall as they did this year it can leave the District with an overspend on the budget. Various members of the organising teams for the conferences this year, next year and the year after will be meeting later this month to discuss the situation and agree on a way forward.

This may well include ascertaining the views of members who do not normally attend the Conference and those who normally do but stayed away this year. Why don’t they attend? Is it the location? Is it the cost? Is it the content? Is it age related? Is it a result of previous bad experiences? We need to know these things if we are to make the conference accessible to all.

One element of the discussion will no doubt focus on the funding of the Conference. We are required by Rotary International to hold a conference, so should the cost of the whole Rotary element of the Conference come from our subscriptions? After all the Conference is open to all members to attend. At present just a proportion is funded by this means, with the remainder coming from the Registration Fee payable by delegates.

Charter Celebrations

We are now well into the Charter season and already a couple of Club Charter Nights have had to be postponed because of such a low take up by visiting Rotarians – a similar situation to the District Conference. I attended a Charter a few days ago where the numbers were just over 60. With the average price of a Charter Night now being (I estimate) in the region of £25 we have to ask “Are the days of annual Charters now numbered? Perhaps we need to have that debate.

The holding of an annual event to celebrate the granting of a Club Charter is not universal. In many areas this does not happen whilst in others just significant anniversaries are celebrated. There may well be other alternative ways of celebrating the granting of a Club Charter. In any case we need to make sure that we cannot be accused of “re-arranging the deck chairs on the Titanic” whilst the ship sinks. Perhaps instead of a charter we should plough a similar amount of finance into promoting our clubs, re-establishing ourselves in our local communities and seeking out new members to carry on the traditional work of Rotary. Just a thought.

District Council

The next District Council meeting will be held at The Novotel on Tuesday 11th December 2012 at 7.30pm. Attendance by voting representatives of all clubs is sought as there will be an important discussion and vote on the Re-Districting proposals mentioned in my last Newsletter. I have today circulated a letter about this to all Club Presidents and Secretaries. It is important if you wish your club’s views to be heard at the Council meeting that you are represented.

We did ask members attending the last District Council meeting to complete an evaluation form. These forms have been collated and the results suggest that the meeting was viewed positively by those attending. Various suggestions were made as to how future meetings could be improved but as with all such exercises some views expressed were diametrically opposite other views. It just shows – “You can’t please all the people all the time”.

Once again there will be presentations by clubs on projects in which they are involved. If your club has a project it would like to advertise to the District via a short presentation at District Council please let me know.

District Website

Have you had a look at the new improved District Website recently? If not spend a few minutes seeing what there is on it that may be of interest to you and if you have any items that may be of interest to a wider Rotary community, please send them to Mark Snape, the Webmaster.

On the website there is a note of the amount raised for District funds (helping to keep subscriptions down) by sales on Amazon through the website. It seems to have been stuck on £2,314 for some time now. Don’t forget – if you are buying anything from Amazon, do it by going onto the District website and using the Amazon link provided. There is no extra cost to you the purchaser. This is simply a donation to us by Amazon.

Sponsored Walk by District Governor – “H2H Walk”

In order to support Bluebell Wood Hospice and Rainbows Hospice I am planning to do a sponsored walk from Bluebell Wood in South Sheffield to Rainbows in Loughborough. The planned dates are Friday 3rd May 2013 to Monday 6th May 2013 (May Day Bank Holiday). The District Sergeant at Arms, Owen Briggs, has already committed to joining me. Any other Rotarians (or indeed non-Rotarians) are invited to join us, either for the whole walk or just for a part of it. We shall be finalising and circulating the route shortly.

I have set myself an ambitious target of raising £5,000 from the walk. The idea is to ask Clubs to hold events along the route of the walk as we pass through their area, mainly during the evenings of 3rd, 4th, 5th and 6th but at other times as well if they fit the walk route.

Would anyone who wants to assist in any way, either walking, organising an event,or in any other way please drop me an email to dave.gailashley@tiscali.co.uk Let’s just hope for dry weather

Foundation Seminar

Don’t forget the Foundation Seminar that is being held on Thursday, 8th November at the Novotel, Long Eaton, commencing at 7.30pm. The outgoing GSE Team to Nepal and their Team Leader David Hood from RC of Wirksworth will be there. The main item of business though will be ensuring that Clubs within the District are prepared and qualified to take on projects etc under Future Vision. It is important therefore that all Clubs are represented here. Terry Leivers is able to give you all the information you need.

Birthday Wishes

Honorary Rotarian Reg Dean from the Rotary Club of Wirksworth will be celebrating his 110th (yes that’s right – 110th) birthday on Sunday 4th November. I understand this makes him the oldest person in Britain – unless you know differently. Reg was a Rotarian at Wirksworth for many years before becoming honorary is later life. Until very recently he attended Wirksworth Club meetings on a regular basis.

I shall be visiting Reg on his birthday and taking best wishes from the RI President Sakuji Tanaka. Why don’t you send him a birthday card from your club and help him to celebrate this VERY special occasion.

Yours in Rotary
Dave Ashley

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DG Dave’s October Newsletter

Dave’s Diary 

The Monthly Newsletter of the District Governor

31st September 2012

DG 2012-2013 David Ashley

Well, hello everyone, a quarter of the year has already past and it seems like just the blink of an eye, but so much has happened. I have carried out my official visits to all but eight clubs now and three of them I shall be visiting during October. The RIBI president has spent three very successful days in the District. The Conference is almost upon us and I have just returned form the second RIBI General Council meeting at Alcester. I would like to spend the next few paragraphs outlining one particular issue that was on the agenda there.

Important Message for Club Presidents and their clubs

Re-Districting within RIBI

Some time ago Rotary International stated their intention of reducing the number of Districts within RIBI from 29 down to 24 and it suggested those Districts that it intended to eliminate. District 1220 was not one of them. Partly as a result of this and partly to address the issue of the declining and ageing membership within RIBI a report was sent from RIBI to RI making alternative suggestions.

One of the suggestions was that RIBI would itself address the number of Districts and would look at a more structured approach to reducing the number. These proposals have now been published to the RIBI General Council in draft format and are now subject to the first round of discussion and review. Within the draft document all the proposed new Districts have been given a letter rather than a number.

All the clubs within District 1220 have been kept together within new District H. {webmaster: this is to aid with the re-oganisation study and Districts will be renumbered later} In addition ten clubs from North Lincolnshire and sixteen clubs from South Yorkshire have been added. These are:-

North Lincolnshire

  • Barrow Meridien
  • Barton Upon Humber
  • Brigg
  • Cleethorpes
  • Epworth & Isle of Axholme
  • Grimsby
  • Grimsby Havelock
  • Grimsby St. James
  • Scunthorpe
  • Scunthorpe Pentagon

South Yorkshire

  • Abbeydale
  • Barnsley
  • Barnsley (Rockley)
  • Doncaster
  • Doncaster St Georges
  • Doncaster St. Leger
  • Hallam
  • Mexborough & District
  • Rotherham
  • Rotherham Sitwell
  • Sheffield
  • Sheffield Vulcan
  • Stainborough
  • Thorne
  • Wombwell
  • Wortley

The new District would therefore be the combination of all the clubs from District 1220 plus the clubs listed above. This would give the new District a total of 84 clubs instead of the present 59 and just under 2,700 members instead of the present figure of just under 1,800.

There are many long term benefits to enlarging the District, not the least of which would be the financial benefit of having more contributing members making the District finances more stable. There are of course many issues still to decide and agree upon, such as election of officers, venues for District meetings, regalia, incorporating the additional clubs etc. etc.

There is now a period until 12th October to allow present District Governors to present any comments or counter proposals to the Re-Districting Committee so that they can then be considered and where appropriate included in a revised draft report. (The basic intention here is to allow a short period of time to iron out any obvious mistakes in the proposals – one or two of which have already been identified in other areas) The revised report will then be circulated back to all the District Governors and also placed on the RIBI Website.

Clubs will then have a period from 25th October till 9th November to make any representations regarding the proposals.

Following this period of consultation a Final Report will be prepared and sent to RI for ratification at their board meeting on 19th January 2013.

The proposals are due to come into force on 1st July 2015. The proposals will not affect the status of any Rotary Clubs or Rotarians. They will simply change the size, shape and nature of the District to which Clubs will be attached.

Would Club Presidents please bring this matter to the attention of their clubs this week so that everyone has an opportunity to comment should they so wish.

I would appreciate it if any comment could be forwarded to me by email by no later than 5pm on 11th October so that I can consider them and forward them to the Re-Districting Committee if appropriate by the set deadline. Anonymous comment will not be considered.

On a personal note, it seems to me that District 1220 has come out of this exercise as well as could have been hoped for. No clubs are being split off from the main group. I am sure that suitable arrangements can be made to combine 1220 with the additional sixteen {webmaster: twenty-six} clubs, many of which are well known to us in this District in any case.

General News Items

The RIBI President, Rotarian John Minhinick and his wife Sheila were in the District from 10th to 12th
September. They were very impressed by the quality of the projects and presentations that they saw. My
thanks to everyone who was involved in any way with the visit for making it such a success.

District Conference

The District Conference is almost upon us and I look forward to seeing as many Rotarians and their guests as possible at Southport. Whilst you are there, do spend some time in the Rotary Showcase, where we have many stalls and stands of Rotary projects and non Rotary organisations. Free tea and coffee there (and the bar is open) on the Friday afternoon.

Don’t forget that you will need to collect your delegate packs from the showcase on arrival.

Group Study Exchange Team

The Group Study Exchange Team from Nepal is presently in the District until 20th October. They are also appearing at District Conference. They are a really good team. I had the pleasure of listening to their first presentation at Mapperley and Arnold on 26th September. Try and get to see them when they are in your neck of the woods – it really is worthwhile.

Remember, this may well be the last GSE Team from abroad that we see because under Future Vision they will be replaced by Vocational Training Teams, a slightly different animal.

Your Views ?

Over the last few months various members of the District Team have been working really hard to deliver a good service to Rotarians across the District. We are trying to make what we do for Clubs and Rotarians at District level as relevant and appropriate as possible. However, to ensure that we are doing the right things we need your comments and views. I have had very constructive feedback from a number of Rotarians recently about District Council, Conference and various other District events. I welcome this. If you have any views about Rotary topics please let me know. I really do want to know. Without this knowledge we cannot improve

Yours in Rotary

Dave Ashley

 

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RIBI President’s visit

Pictured left to right: Matlock President Peter Wigglesworth, RIBI President John Minhinick, DG Dave Ashley 

Rotarian John Minhinick, the President of Rotary International in Great Britain and Ireland (RIBI) and his wife Sheila, left our District yesterday after three days with us. Before leaving, President John asked me to thank everyone who had been involved in either the arrangements for or attendance at all of the different parts of the visit. He and Sheila have had a wonderful time in District 1220 and were most complementary about everything they saw and heard and the activities they took part in during their visit. Brief details of the visit can be found on my blog on the District website.

On a personal level I would wish to echo those sentiments. Everyone involved has clearly worked very hard to ensure that their part of the visit went off without a hitch. There was no part of the visit that did not present Rotary in this District in the most positive light to him.

The arrangements for the visit were particularly intended to highlight the range of work we are doing in our local communities, with schools, the sick and the elderly, our forward planning in respect of membership retention and recruitment and the help we provide to local charitable causes in our communities and in this regard it was extremely successful. We also tried to give him just a very small glimpse of the natural beauty, history, culture and lifestyle within the District. Once again John gave great praise to this element of the visit.

Unfortunately as with any three day visit, it is not possible to include all clubs in the arrangements but Pres. John was exposed to almost one third of the Clubs in the District, giving him a fair picture of the health of the District.

Thanks once again

Yours in Rotary

Dave Ashley

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DG Dave’s September Newsletter

Dave’s Diary 

The Monthly Newsletter of the District Governor

31st August 2012

DG 2012-2013 David Ashley

Well, we are already two months into this Rotary year where we have been asked by our International President Sakuji Tanaka to seek “Peace through Service” and as most Rotarians in the District will by now be aware it is this theme on which I have based my talks to clubs. Of course whilst delivering this talk I have also been acutely aware of my wider responsibilities as the District Governor.

I would like to thank all the clubs that I have visited for their hospitality and for the warm welcome that I have received everywhere that I have been. I would also like to take this opportunity to remind everyone in the District of a number of other matters that are also of importance during this year and beyond.

District Conference

As I am sure you are all aware, the conference, one of the highlights of the Rotary year, is this year being held in Southport from Friday 5th to Sunday 7th October 2012. The Conference Planning Team have looked critically at every aspect of the conference and where we have identified a need for change, improvement or update we have taken the steps needed. Everything is now planned and arranged. We believe that this year’s conference will be the best yet. This district has a history of excellent and very well attended conferences, but as with all things we have to keep them fresh and relevant to Rotary of today. We cannot live in the past or on the glories of yesteryear.

If you have not yet registered to attend, there is still time. You can register on line and pay on-line at www.2012conference1220.co.uk/registration

Just have a look at what is on offer:

  • Friday afternoon
    Rotary Showcase with over 30 stalls to browse, presentations from a small stage – and the opportunity to chat informally to the RI President’s Representative, the RIBI President and of course a number of District Officers. There is free tea and coffee on offer and the bar will be open.
  • Friday evening
    Sit back, relax,be entertained by Tony Grant’s acclaimed Queen tribute & comedian Johnnie Casson.
  • Saturday morning
    They wowed the RIBI Conference – now fall in love with “Canine Partners” live on-stage
    An Olympic beginning and International Fire and Rescue
    The difference that Rotary scholarships and youth exchanges make to young lives including a video from Rob Avery-Phipps in China
  • Saturday DG’s lunch
    Join me and a truly inspirational guest speaker, successful Olympian Dr. Alison Mowbray.
    Listen to the delightful singing of Lilly Taylor-Ward
  • Saturday night
    Is party time with Revival and Cantata in the Floral Hall and JD & Impressions and Lily Taylor-Ward in the Waterfront Suite. No tickets – just select what you want throughout the evening.
  • Sunday morning – a session not to be missed
    Keynote speaker Paralympian and Polio victim, Anne Wafula Strike, hopefully fresh from success.
    A focus on Youth.
    Come and celebrate the Family of Rotary with inspirational speeches and music

    A fitting finale with a celebration of Rotary with Cantata leading you all in song.

I am really excited about Conference and hope you are too. There are still plenty of places available so get your registration forms in and have a really good “Rotary” weekend.

District Foundation Seminar

Terry Leivers, Mick White and the District Foundation teams for this year and next, are busily working away to produce a fantastic Foundation Seminar, due to take place at 7.30pm on Thursday, 8th November 2012 at the Novotel, Long Eaton.

It is vitally important that all clubs in the District are represented at this seminar as the vast majority of the evening will be taken up with information about Future Vision and the qualification process that Clubs will need to undertake in order to take advantage of the new grants procedures etc.

Please make sure that your club does not get left behind. Make a note of this date and ensure that at least your Club Foundation Chairman and President for 2013/14 attends

District Link Evening

Just a bit of advance warning of this event. The originally published date has now been changed and the Link Evening will be at The Civic Centre, Mansfield on Wednesday, 13th March 2013. This is likely to be the last such Link Evening under the present Foundation arrangements and we shall have the outgoing Nepal GSE Team, a number of Ambassadorial Scholars and hopefully a Peace Scholar. Make a note of the date and keep it free. Although at this stage we do not expect to have any restriction on numbers, it is anticipated that demand for places will be very high and early booking is therefore recommended. Look out for the full details that will be circulated in due course.

Membership

At my club visits I have not been pushing the issue of membership. However it still remains at the top of the agenda for Rotary in these islands at the present time. At RIBI level following some extensive research a “Five Year Membership Development and Retention Plan” has been produced and submitted to RI.

As a part of the overall strategy for developing our membership base RIBI has recently published a small booklet for use by clubs and a DVD “We’re for Communities” that I am assured have been sent to all clubs. Please make best use of these tools for promoting Rotary and your clubs. Further supplies can be obtained from RIBI.

I am sure that many members of Clubs in the District have heard rumours about the “Re-Districting” of RIBI. This is an exercise that is currently under-way. It is looking at reducing the number of Districts in RIBI from the present 29 down to about 24. The team of Rotarians who have been asked to do this work have not as yet reported their findings and so I cannot comment at this stage as to how it might (or might not) affect District 1220. Once they have put their proposals on the table I will share the information with you.

Another aspect that forms a part of this five year plan is “Visioning” where Clubs who recognise that they are struggling for members can ask for and receive assistance from a team of Rotarians appointed by the District and trained in this process. This process has been successful in other parts of the world and there is no reason to believe it would not work here.

At the present time we have two clubs with less than ten members, nine clubs with between 10 and 20 members and a further nine with between 21 and 25 members. Almost one third of our clubs therefore have less than 25 members. In others the numbers are gradually going down and we need to reverse this trend. Despite these issues, many clubs still do not have a dedicated, long term, Membership Officer. Has yours? If not think about appointing one.

Noel Harrison, the District Membership Chairman, is receiving training in Visioning and will be selecting a team of volunteers to help him shortly. If you feel that your club would benefit from this assistance or indeed in any other way to do with membership, then please contact Noel and see if he can help.

A number of officers from the District have also been very busy producing and implementing a “Business Initiative”. At the last District Assembly a briefing was given about this project to incoming Presidents. The project has now moved substantially forward and it is hoped that we will be in a position to spread the net much wider over coming months.

I am hopeful that at the District Council meeting in December we should be able to have a full presentation on the project.

International Projects Fair and Dinner

The District International committee have organised an “International Projects Fair and Dinner” to be held at the Novotel, Bostocks Lane, Long Eaton on Thursday, 1st November. It will consist of a number of stalls displaying Club Projects and some selected international charity stalls. There will be some entertainment with an international theme and presentations by representatives of the charities, “Sand Dams” and “Save the Children”

You will be able to browse the stalls from approx. 6pm onwards and the dinner will be served at 7.30pm with the presentations afterwards.

It is a long time since we have held such an event in this District and obviously we would like it to be a success. Please check your diary and see if you are available, then book by contacting the International Coordinator, Gail Ashley (details as per directory).

District Posts – Opportunities

Rotarian Steve Moore, Sherwood Sunrisers, has just been successful in his application for a new job, which unfortunately from our point of view will mean that he is leaving the District. Steve has held the District post of “New Generations – Rotaract and Interact” for some time and so we now need to find a suitable replacement for him. If you would be interested in taking over this position, which works closely in liaison with other members of the New Generations Committee, please give me a call so that we can discuss the implications.

On behalf of the District I would like to wish Steve every success for the future, both in his vocation and in his Rotary life.

A second position on the New Generations committee has also recently become available since Kim Armstrong stepped down owing to business pressures. Kim looked after the two RYLA courses that are held each year. Much of the work is to do with the administration of the courses and liaison with The White Hall Outdoor Pursuits Centre, as well as attendance on the course itself. Once again should anyone be interested in taking up this position, please speak to me or to Caroline Stone of Ilkeston Rotary Club.

As with Steve, I would like to express the thanks of the District to Kim for the work he has done and wish him all the best for the future.

General Topics

Lastly, but very importantly, don’t forget the District Council Meeting being held at The Novotel, Bostocks Lane, Long Eaton on Monday 24th September, starting at 7.30pm. You may well notice a few changes to the structure of this meeting from that of the past. As well as the normal business there will be a number of presentations including:

  • The Fishtail Project – Martin Beaumont, Dronfield
  • Nottingham Showcase – Noel Harrison, Sherwood Sunrisers
  • Kedleston Showcase – John Cavey, Derby South
  • Lisbon Conference – Ian Halliday, Amber Valley

Because this is YOUR District Council meeting we want to know your views about it. Therefore at the end of the meeting, delegates will be asked to complete a short feedback form that we will use to improve the design, nature and content of future meetings.

Inner Wheel

Whilst on the lookout for new members don’t forget our colleagues in District 22 Inner Wheel. As always any female relative of a Rotarian is eligible to join. Please remind members of this when they join us. In addition now, any female, whether or not they are related to a Rotarian can be accepted into membership of Inner Wheel. If Rotary is perhaps not right for someone, give a thought to passing them on to Inner Wheel.

District Governor’s Blog

Don’t forget to have a look at what I get up to on a daily basis on my blog on the District Website.

 

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DG Dave’s August Newsletter

Dave’s Diary 

The Monthly Newsletter of the District Governor

31st July 2012

DG 2012-2013 David Ashley

Wow – how quickly has the month of July flown by.   It seems less than five minutes since the handover at the Novotel on 1st of the month.     Over this last four weeks or so I have begun to  realise how being the District Governor truly takes over your life.

In this time I have addressed twenty eight (28) clubs, carried out two sets of interviews for a GSE Team Leader, attended the Rotary Showcase at Kedleston on two separate days, attended the RIBI General Council over two days, taken part in three Conference planning meetings, one Assistant Governor’s meeting, one training meeting, a Strategy Group Meeting, presented certificates for cycling proficiency at a local school, attended the Inner Wheel District 22 President’s Induction, two club social events, a classic car show, welcomed  10 new members and attended two Rotarian funerals.

I am of course open to invitations to any activities, planned by clubs if they think my presence would be of benefit.

But, what else has been happening in the District and on the wider front during this time?  The District Membership chairman, Noel Harrison, the chairman of the Marketing, Public Relations and Communications committee, David Pedlar, together with a number of other Rotarians have been preparing a strategy for membership recruitment to see us into the next few years.   A major part of this strategy is a business initiative, aimed at securing partnerships with businesses throughout the District.     It is very early days yet, but a pilot scheme at Rolls Royce, Derby seems to be showing signs of success.    I hope to be able to pass on some good news about this pilot scheme in due course and subsequently circulate the package for use by Clubs, so watch this space.

Members of the District Executive have been looking for ways to improve the attendance and feedback from District Council Meetings.  Over recent times attendances have been falling sharply and we need to reverse this trend.   Several initial steps are being taken and these include

  • Improving the PA sound system in use
  • Introducing more Club led items onto the agenda
  • Removal of the “top table”
  • Changes to the reporting practices, to include more Club information
  • Introduction of a simple feedback form from attendees at next Dist. Council.

I hope these changes will be seen as positive, but if you have any ideas, please let me know.  This is after all your District Council I look forward to seeing you all there.

There is a snippet of advance information to pass on.  The RIBI President, Rtn. John Minhinick, will be making his annual visit to the District from Monday 10th to Wednesday 12th September.   His programme of activities will be published shortly when it has been finalised.   He will be addressing us at two meetings, those of Belper and Duffield and at Mansfield.

The District Conference is fast approaching.  The programme has been finalised, the entertainment is sorted and the speakers are all lined up.    David Pedlar has worked tremendously hard on creating a programme that will be varied, exciting, entertaining and inspiring.     If you are regular Conference attenders, you will find the Friday tea-time plenary session has been replaced by a new format and the final session on Sunday morning will be so inspiring and joyful that you will go home with spirits lifted and with the joy of Rotary in your heart.   Don’t miss it.

If you have not yet booked you have till just 25th August to do so before the price goes up by £5 per head to £43.

You can find a daily update of my activities on the District Website, www.rotary1220.org under “DG Dave’s Blog”     Have a look at it and make a comment about it.

And finally,  Don’t forget –

“You don’t stop laughing because you get old, 

you get old because you stop laughing.”

 

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