Written by Gérard Allonneau, Rotary coordinator, Zone 11 & part 20B
Since 2010, Youth Service includes all Rotary Youth Programs. Every district in France appoints a District New Generations chair (DNGC) responsible for staying in touch with our youth alumni, offering them new activities, and inviting them to join an Interact, Rotaract, or even a Rotary Club.
A Youth Programs Cross-promotion Day was organized in several districts in our zone. We invited former Youth Exchange and RYLA participants, Interactors, and Rotaractors as well as young Rotarians. Here are two examples.
In District 1640, former youth program participants were really happy to be together again after several years. They showed interest in the “Family of Rotary” and, in particular, joining Rotaract.
In District 1720, the needs of young people were assessed through a brainstorming session. We used an assessment model that allowed us to immediately interpret the responses to our questions.
When asked about the concrete steps Rotary should take to encourage the involvement of youth in Rotary, these young leaders answered as follows:
- Increased communication targeting young people (31%)
- Increased assistance in helping young people start a career (25%)
- Increased inter-generational service (18%).
Overall, youth service re-energizes Rotary for three reasons:
- Working with young people can be a motivating factor for Rotarians;
- Active collaboration with Rotaractors and Interactors energizes Rotary service projects;
- Mentoring programs conducted by Rotarians and Rotaractors inspires a new generation of Rotarians.