THE FELLOWSHIP HISTORY
The Fellowship was started when it was still at the stage of a pilot project as IVCG (International Vocational Contact Group). It was the year 1993. Only years later, when the IVCG pilot projects became regular on the basis of a review by the RI Board, it was renamed RRVF (Rotary Recreational and Vocational Fellowship). The name was recently changed again into Vocational and Recreational Voluntary Fellowship.
When the number of projects and fellowships are on the rise, it becomes important to ensure the quality is not compromised for the want of quantity. It is like how a real coffee lover will not compromise on his cup of coffee for the want of reducing weight. He will opt for Eco Slim instead and enjoy both a great coffee and a remedy to reduce weight.
When it started, the rules were much less rigid. It needed only about seven members from different Rotary Clubs and at least three countries represented, with the approval from just one DG and registration from RI.
No constitution, bylaws etc were specified. So the fellowship started with just about 7 members, with the representation of India, the Netherlands and Belgium.
The last was the result of the notice during the EFQM annual convention in 1991 (?) held at Brussels.
The membership kept increasing, especially after RI started advertising the RRVF activities through The Rotarian magazine as well as regional magazines started keeping a page for the application to RRVFs.
The Chairman published quarterly newsletters called TQM RRVF. Membership went up to around 200 plus and from more than about 20 countries, but there was no feedback from members. There was no membership fee.
In order to enable greater fellowship among members, it was published a questionnaire in one of the newsletters which members could fill up and return. Less than 10 members responded. Similarly, there was no reaction when nominations were invited for the position of chairman of the fellowship.
In order to see whether the large number of members can be limited to only the serious ones, nominal membership fee was proposed. It was made in three slabs: $ 10 per annum for Australia, North America and Europe; Indian Rupees 100 for India; $ 5 for all other areas.
Member Representatives were authorised, one for Europe and one for the US, to collect the subscription as well as to distribute copies of the Newsletter.
Less than 20 members subscribed.
The silver lining in the cloud was the very successful formation of the Italian Chapter and its activities.
Meanwhile, the Chairman Rot. Ram Ramamurthry retired from his regular employment and relocated.
Many changes were brought about by RI in the rules for RRVF – like requirement of constitution, by-laws for Fellowships.
RI now requires many reports.
The RI secretariat personnel looking after Fellowships is changed and more active. RI committee require to report the fellowship activities and send copies of the newsletters. According to this new approach the Chairman Ramamurthry decided to give up his position and asked the Italian section Coordinator Rtn. Pietro Freschi to take him over.
The new Chairman found the Fellowship as a convoy with two velocity:
– the international section completely inactive in spite of the effort spent in trying to develop some activity
– the Italian section with its 34 members full of enthusiasm and producing papers of various titles to introduce Quality to Rotarians.
After having published the �quality in the Club, for a Rotary of quality� and distributed hundreds of copies, the 35 Italian members (two more in the 2002) have approached the theme of quality in the schools.
The guide aims to give the basic knowledge to the Rotarians who want to approach any local Authority related with any type of instruction: how to improve the level of the standards, to meet the clients (students, parents, teachers) expectatives, to measure the expected levels.
All the Italian Rotary Clubs, have had the opportunity to challenge for �the best quality Club� having followed the basic rules included in the Rotary Procedure Manual and checked through the parameters listed in the publication mentioned above.
The award was given officially in June 2002 during the D 2040 Convention and similarly in the following editions.
Now the seven edition is in progress.
The members have also defined the �quality in the health system� and the new approach is to consider and take care of ill people considering their point of view.
The pamphlet will be lunched during a particular convention with the political presence of the Regional Governor and the highest personality in the medical field.
Quality in tourism, quality in education was the next challenge.
A pamphlet regarding Privacy in respect to the Club members has also been done.
Officially several members are located in various part of the world but unfortunately no activity is registered in such Countries in spite of all the efforts of the International Bridge.
A web site has been developed and regularly updated.