Posted by Louisa Horne on Aug 01, 2019

August is Membership Month!  How will your club celebrate this theme?

Maybe you could have a member celebration party!  Even cake for breakfast would be good… to say “we’re glad you’re here” to each other and to acknowledge the great members in your club.

Or maybe … just maybe… you could explore starting a new Passport Club in your area!  “Seriously?!?”, you say.  “We can’t get new members in our own club now… why would we start a new one?”  Exactly the point.  Sometimes, we need to be courageous and recognize that there are more former Rotarians in our community than there are Rotarians – those people came to Rotary at some point and wanted to give back to their community but… there was something that didn’t work for them – and they left.  Something didn’t click - time, location, culture, projects, expectations… who knows?  Good news!! Now we have an opportunity to have a very flexible model to offer them...

Passport clubs can meet in a coffee shop or pub as few as four or six times per year – yes, per YEAR!  In between, members can attend some of your meetings or participate in service projects as a group or with your club – or with other community service opportunities such as Guides or Hospital volunteering or Meals on Wheels – it all counts!  You can start with a Satellite club that extends your own club’s reach – and then, as that group grows, it can morph into a Passport Club – and you have another group to collaborate with!  Learn more by Googling “Rotary Passport Club” to see some examples – and your district team would love to help you – just let us know and we’ll be there!  

Most clubs would like to have more members – and starting a Satellite or Passport Club is one way to do it.  The other way is to enhance your own club to be even more attractive.  Check out Doug Logan’s newsletter article on making your meetings more irresistible.  Here are a few more questions to ask about various avenues of service:

·         Community service:  Are you having an impact?  Do you need to talk to your community leaders and explore new impactful projects?  Maybe research a new signature project?

·         International service:  Are you having an impact?  Maybe a collaborative effort with another club could help – some clubs even have joint international committees – wow!  Ask us about that.

·         Youth service:  Do you participate in any youth programs?  Exchange or adventures or scholarships?

·         Vocational service and professional development:  Are you giving opportunities to members for development?  What about mentorship opportunities for people starting their careers?

·         Do people know about all the great work you do?  Are you telling your stories on social media and at community gatherings?  Maybe some community partnerships would help.  Let us know if you’d like some help with developing partnerships with groups like your local Chamber of Commerce.  We’d love to help!  And don’t forget about the Puppy contest to win some cash to help with your public image efforts.

For more information on club health, or to find resources that can help, contact Gail Gosse, Membership Chair and, if you’d like to start a new club, let Louisa know!