Programme week commencing 29th March 2012

Oddly vocations is not a term which is often used these days, however much emphasis is placed on Vocational Service in Rotary. Many used to refer to a vicar’s job as vocation and likewise with teachers etc, today we talk more about careers and ensuring we get our Life/Work balance right. The dictionary definition of vocation is – strong feeling of fitness for a particular career or occupation or a person’s employment, esp. regarded as requiring dedication. Paul Harris when he started Rotary in 1907, put vocation at the forefront of his new movement, where it still remains today.

Lots of people have been asking the question, ‘what do we tell people they will get out of Rotary?’ Many already recognise the charitable work that Rotary undertakes both locally and internationally, some consider this to be carried out by those who are now retired. However perhaps Rotary and those who observe our activities have missed the point and emphasis, Rotary is encouraging its members to use their vocations in the service of others. Whilst doing this, Rotarians will learn new skills and develop existing ones, they will build on their experiences in new environments and apply their experience in new and different situations, this provides valuable opportunities that some people might need to pay huge amounts of money for if they were to attend external training.

Building our Team

Last week we were considering group dynamics and how our new District 1100 eClub needs to consider developing our relationships in order to move forward as an eClub. This week we need to consider how each of us brings our different vocation to the team. Without understanding these vocations, it will be difficult to understand how we can get the best results from the team, plus vocation is different from the current job or employment we have, vocation is more, the skills, talents, experience, knowledge and aspirations we have to develop these attributes. For example drawing skills might not be your strongest attribute, but you may wish it was, however you’ve got some fantastic creative ideas, so how can you develop these through others who have the drawings skills, but maybe not the creative ideas. As we develop our team:

  • let us share our vocations,
  • let us share what we believe we can bring, our skills, talents, experience,
  • let us share our aspirations of things we’d like to do as we expand our vocational experience
  • let us share what we would like to learn more about
An Example of how Rotary helps develop Vocational Skills
Commencing on Saturday Tim & Janice are to be the hosts of Chetra Gunathilake who is a lawyer and Chamil Thanthrimudalige who is a photographer, they are part of a Rotary International Group Study Exchange  from Sri Lanka who are visiting District 1100 and our District 1100 eClub are sharing the hosting in the Swindon area for a week. During their stay in the Swindon area, they will be visiting Marlborough, we have arranged for Chetra to visit the Magistrates Court, Crown Court and Probation Service, they are going on a ghost walk, before on Thursday they move onto the next part of the District. These GSE exchanges are really good opportunities for young professionals to learn more about their vocation in another part of the world and more about the country and culture that this vocation takes place in. Two years ago Tim and Janice hosted Lisa Devincenzi from Italy, this has resulted in a very good friendship including visits to see Lisa in her home and meet her family. This is a good example of how Rotary is ensuring that vocation is at the heart of its programmes.
Another Rotary programme which encourages the vocational development is the Rotary Ambassador Scholars Programme, before Christmas last year we ran an eClub programme where Emma Harman interviewed Galina about her participation in this scheme, if you haven’t viewed it, this be found can be found lower on this blog first published on 2nd November 2011.
What can we do to make Vocations a key part in our Rotary?
  • undertake the things above in our website posts, so our whole team learns more about what we bring to the eClub,
  • make sure we let members know the areas we’d like to learn more about or where we’d like to complement our skills with others we are not so good at,
  • Vocational visits could be an activity we organise, are there any vocations that would interest you?

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