Rtn PP Barry Austin gives us an insight into his second club - Tauranga in New Zealand

The club was chartered on the 20th April 1981 with 24 Foundation members. One is still an active member of the club today and another is a life time honorary member ...the original founder president. The club is a strong supporter of The Rotary Foundation with seventeen club members and five members of the community becoming honoured as Paul Harris fellows.
The club has 51 active members at present.
The club is one of four Rotary clubs in the city of Tauranga which is part of district 9930 comprising of 54 clubs situated in the Waikato,Central North Island , Bay of Plenty, East Coast and Hawke's Bay. It's main fundraiser is The Port of Tauranga Yacht Regatta which is run annually. There are also a considerable number of golf days.

Tauranga is a town of around 120.000 people situated in the Bay of Plenty ,New Zealand which is a drive of about 2.5 hors south of Auckland . It nestles with its own micro climate in the Bay with warm consistent temperatures in the months I am there ....November - April.
I began attending Te Papa in 2003/4 on a regular basis after finding the welcome to be very warm and friendly and in 2005 was offered honorary membership in 2005 under the Presidency of the late Ian Enright who unfortunately passed away last year after a long fight against cancer ...a lovely man. I have served on two main committees. Initially I was on the youth committee which is very much involved with two big Rotary initiatives ..Ryla and Rypen both of which teach leadership skills to young adults and the other awareness and leadership skills to under privileged kids . There is also active involvement in Youth Exchange students every year with one of our club members being the district officer. I took part in several programmes organised but since Gerry's death and my longer stay out here have been involved on Community service .
They are pro active and provide a great help with food collections ( particularly at Christmas ) ,fresh fruit collection and this year the installation of a permanent seat in one of the Anzac cemeteries for people to Remember in peace their loved ones.
The social life is excellent and took me under its wing in my difficult time in 2012 and my life has been made so good by invitations to Rotarians homes . It has been a good life for members here since we both arrived here in 2002 .
Meetings are well organised with a meeter and greater , someone to say grace , thanks to the speaker with a gift of a pen with the clubs name on it , a parting thought ...clever or funny and a great mixing of seating with no cliques ....it certainly gets you to know people quicker and better

I count myself to be so lucky to be a member of "two clubs" and enjoy fellowship from opposite sides of the world .
This is not an effort to praise this club above my " mother " club at all .....more a way of saying thank you for giving me the opportunity to visit both .

The huge bonus I have is one of two Summers here in The Land of the long White Cloud and one at home in Blighty .
A welcome is always here for any intrepid visitors who want to see a beautiful country ...ask Frank Dillon !!!

See you in May
Barry Austin .


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