Rotary sets stage for new club year

CROWLEY – At the beginning of each club year, Rotary Clubs across the world hold club assemblies to better plan the next year of its activities.

The Rotary Club of Crowley held their assembly Tuesday and seemed poised for another successful and full year.

The club heard from all five of its avenues of service chairs which include the original four–community service, international service, club service and vocational service–as well as the 2010 addition of a fifth–new generation of service.

The community service sector is chaired by Melinda Malmay, who spoke about the two committees under the sector.

Perhaps it is for these activities that Rotary is most known as it is among the most visible aspect of the club with such activities as volunteering at Miss Helen’s Soup Kitchen, The Welcome House, Thanksgiving meal at The Welcome House, Christmas food baskets and more. The community development committee, chaired by Peggy Sandidge, focuses on these activities and she said she expects those activities to continue.

“All of these are wonderful and worthy projects so I would expect we would continue them,” she said.

Sandidge also had a couple of suggestions, such as bringing a bit more organization to several of the activities, such as volunteering at Miss Helen’s Soup Kitchen, to make sure everyone knows what’s going on. Furthermore, Sandidge suggested as a possible other activity a potential book drive to set up a library at a local women’s prison that she would like to see come to fruition over the next year.

Malmay then referenced the other half of community service, the environmental side, which, among other activities, gets Rotarians involved in Crowley’s annual citywide clean-up day.

Next, Sandy Melancon, chair of the international service sector spoke about all of items that fall under the international umbrella, including the potential of this year furthering the Rotary Club of Crowley’s partnership with the New Dawn Rotary Club of Johannesburg, South Africa and their Five Cees orphanage. The club may help right a grant to help the orphanage with scholarships or with solar panels.

Melancon also mentioned the international service club’s continued work to help eradicate the world of polio through the Rotary International’s PolioPlus and the opportunity for club members to network globally through special hobby-related international groups, such as bird watching and antique cars.

Melancon also reminded the club that it is not too early to sign up for the 2013 Rotary International Convention, which will be held in Lisbon, Portugal.

Scott Privat, chair of the club services sector, explained the many things his committee will continue to take care of this year, including setting up great programs weekly and developing membership, which perfectly coincided with three new members being proposed at the meeting.

The vocational service sector chair, Amy Thibodeaux, spoke next and talked about the five committees her sector will once again focus on this year. The committees include career development, which coincides with Rotary’s involvement in Crowley’s Career Day Expo, slated for February 2013. Other committees include vocation at work, vocation awareness and volunteers. The vocational awards that are handed out three times per year also falls under this sector as well as the club’s scholarships to Crowley High, Notre Dame and Northside Christian School seniors each year.

Finally Adrianne Vidrine, chair of the new generations of service sector, spoke about the relatively newly added sector, which looks to get the younger generations involved in Rotary Club and its missions.

Added by Rotary International in 2010, it features youth groups like InterAct, Early Act clubs, Youth Act and RotarAct, which features club memberships from grades first through college level. Locally several schools like Ross Elementary and Crowley Middle feature clubs as well as the Acadian Technical College and LSU-Eunice.

The Rotary Club of Crowley expects the youth organizations to continue to grow at each school as they too help perpetuate Rotary’s four avenues of service.

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