|Rotary Club of Secunderabad Sunrise|
Rotary Friendship Exchange :
Have you ever wanted to share an overseas travel adventure with Rotarians from another country, so you can truly learn about the many aspects of their culture—through friends that live there, rather than the hurried conversations of busy hotel clerks, overworked cab drivers, or waiters? Would you like to sample a country's home cooked cuisine, and live with the family that prepared those meals for a few days, rather than live solely on restaurant food and sleep in a succession of hotel rooms? Looking at this question from the other side, are you proud of your homeland? Would you like to share the assets of your home or city with Rotarians from other areas of the world? If so, you would enjoy Rotary Friendship Exchange.
What is Friendship Exchange?
The Rotary Friendship Exchange Program is an activity in which Rotarians and their families carry out reciprocal visits, living for a few days in the homes of Rotarians and their families in other countries. The goal of the program is to advance international understanding, goodwill and peace through person-to-person contacts across national boundaries.
There arc two types of Friendship Exchanges. The first is the Visitor Program in which individual Rotarians, who may be accompanied by family members, spend a few days in the home of a Rotarian in another country. The second is a Team Program in which a number of couples, typically from four to six, visit several communities in the host district for up to one month. The number of couples and/or length of stay is flexible, and is agreed upon by the districts involved. Both types of visits are coordinated by district Friendship Exchange committees and both are carried out at no expense to Rotary International. Also, districts are encouraged, where feasible, to consider arranging uni-vocational exchanges — exchanges where host and guest Rotarians are of the same occupation.
Who May Apply?
In the Visitor Program, Rotarians and their families, including children, are eligible for participation. In the Team Program, participation is limited to Rotarians and their spouses.
How Does a Rotarian Apply for Rotary Friendship Exchange?
For either type of exchange (visitor or team), Rotarians must apply through their club president, who will inform them if their district is participating in Rotary Friendship Exchange. Participating districts will appoint a district Friendship Exchange chairman, whose job will be to coordinate the program through the use of a list of Rotary Friendship Exchange chairmen from around the world, which can be obtained from R.I. World Headquarters in Evanston, Illinois, U.S.A. The chairman is responsible for contacting other RFE chairmen and/or club presidents to find out which districts are interested in exchanges and arranging details such as location, length of stay, number of participants, means of application and requirements for participation.
Participating districts will develop their own standards for the selection of participants. In all cases. Friendship Exchange must be undertaken with the consent of two thirds of the clubs in the participating districts; with the approval of the District Governors; and with the understanding that they involve no liability to Rotary International.
When are Friendship Exchanges Available?
Generally, Friendship Exchanges may take place any time of the year that is agreeable to the clubs and districts involved. Reciprocal visits may take place during the same year, or in the following year.
Where Can Rotary Friendship Exchange Take You?
You can go anywhere in the world where there are Rotary districts that want to share fellowship and homestay.
How Can I Host a Friendship Exchange?
To become a host, a Rotarian should apply through the club president, who will contact the Rotary Friendship Exchange district chairman.
Rotarians who have participated as Friendship Exchange guests will be anxious to serve as hosts when Rotary visitors come to their home community.
How Long Does a Friendship Exchange Last?
In the Visitor Program (Rotarians or Rotary families), the length of stay is usually several days (probably no more than three or four). However, in each case it is up to the host club to determine the nature of the Friendship Exchange, the number of host families involved, and the length of each stay. Rotary district Friendship Exchange Teams, however, visit several communities in their host district, staying a few days with each individual family for a total period of up to four weeks (or a total period as agreed upon by the districts involved).
Who Pays for Friendship Exchange?
In all cases, guests are expected to pay their basic expenses. Variations from this standard are only at the host family's discretion and should not be expected.
What Constitutes Friendship Exchange?
In each case, it is up to the host club to determine how it will handle Rotary Friendship Exchange (i.e. the number of host families involved) and to make all arrangements accordingly. It is anticipated that homestay might include housing (usually in the homes of Rotarians), meals, sightseeing — the same courtesies that would be extended to a friend. It is suggested that basic arrangements be agreed to in writing by the participating clubs.
For Rotary Friendship Teams, the host district chairman will provide the guest district chairman with an itinerary of host Rotary clubs along the visitation route and information on the length of stay with each. District chairmen and host club volunteers will mutually agree upon the itinerary and arrangements before the exchange is carried out.
Why is Friendship Exchange Important as a Rotary Program?
Friendship Exchange is not simply a way to obtain friendly lodging during a business or vacation trip. The exchange of Rotary families and couples who are motivated by a sincere desire to learn about others and to share international fellowship can be an effective tool in promoting better human relations around the world.
For more information about RFE opportunities in Dist3150 contact Rtn Rajesh Pamnani
|Jan'2010||Team from RID 5550 Canada|
|Visit to Argentina as Friendship Exhange Chairperson|
|Comments from DG 3150 (2007-08).|
from Poland, Rtn. Krzysztof Milczarek, IPP
(2006-07) of the Rotary Club of Poznan Puszczykowo, District 2230, Poland