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New President

*Thanks to the Southcoast Register for these words.

Rotary Nowra is heading in a new direction.

Following the demise of the Bomaderry chapter, which recently handed back its charter because it was unable to form a board, the Nowra group has decided to adopt a more novel approach to meetings.

Never was this more evident than at the recent changeover dinner, where the usual formal proceedings were replaced by casual clothes and pizzas.

Incoming president Trace Dann said it was the shape of things to come.

"It's based on what people want, rather than what we think we need to do," Mr Dann said.

"It was part of trying to meet the needs of customers", he said.

"The community is our customer, and we've got to find out from the community what they want, and then we should try to give them what we can, as best we can," Mr Dann said.

That included changing up meetings.

While most would continue the tradition of being held at the Bomaderry Bowling Club, there could also be barbecues or black tie dinners, depending on circumstances.

"Every now and then we're going to do something different," Mr Dann said.

"Let's not be restrained by the traditional behaviours which can sometimes put a lot of younger people off."

The new approach is centred on making Rotary more relevant to the community and attracting more young people as part of a more diverse membership, Mr Dann said, including more women, people from more ethnic backgrounds and Indigenous Australians.

He said service clubs across the board were facing tough times in the wake of an ageing population and a younger generation not as focused on giving back to the community.

"But then young people want to get something out of it themselves, so if we can give them something we may be able to bring them on board into the club to help the community, which is what we're trying to do," Mr Dann said.

The challenge of making it more attractive to younger people included getting out in the community more, being seen to be doing good things, and putting on functions and events that attract younger people, he said.

Mr Dann said he was keen to engage more with local businesses, entertainers and individuals to put "the fun and excitement back into Rotary".


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