Celebrating its 50th year of service, the Rotary Club of Empangeni (South Africa, District 9370) inducted its newest President at a lively function held at the Empangeni Country Club on Tuesday evening.
Incoming President Barbara Robarts will now steer the ship after taking over from Glynn Harborth, who looked back on an extremely busy and productive year.
Projects ranged from participation in DICE’s ‘Hang Out With Madiba’ clothes collection day to the Santa Shoe Box campaign, Mafika Crèche party, school dictionary purchase and distribution, annual swimathon, youth leadership,
Rotary Health Day, wheelchair fundraisers and assistance with the Thuthukani skills scheme.
Cycling featured high on the agenda, both in terms of the Rotary Cycle Ride and the bicycle delivery project.
“Everything we have achieved this year would not have been possible without the help of my dedicated Board and all the club members – and especially my wife Jean, without whom I could not have done this,” said Harborth.
Incoming President Barbara Robarts said recruitment of new – including younger – members would be a priority, especially since a number of current members are leaving the area.
“We also need to establish a website and make better use of social media platforms, as well as making the club fit the demographics better.”
“The public image of Rotary is important, to ensure people understand that we are simply volunteers who care about the community and are prepared to ease the plight of others,” said Barbara, who will also lead efforts in rhino and environmental preservation.
She likened her role for 2017-18 projects to the leader of a Comrades Marathon ‘12-hour bus’.
“We will make sure every member successfully finishes the race.”