Rotary Club of Kinta was formed towards the end of 1979 to increase membership when the Rotary Club of Ipoh celebrated its 50th anniversary and the Rotary International its 75th anniversary. Named after the Kinta Valley and chartered in 1980, the service-oriented NGO has had many milestones over the years.
Ipoh Echo spoke to its committee members recently to find out more about Rotary, the only service organisation based on vocation in the world.
“The Rotary Club of Kinta initiated the Ipoh International Run, established the International Peace Park and 5-star public toilets in Taman D.R. Seenivasagam and founded the Ipoh Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals. We supplied rehabilitation machines for National Stroke Association of Malaysia and computers as well as educational toys to Sekolah Semangat Maju. Plus, we provided humanitarian aid to Sri Lanka during the tsunami in 2015,” Dato’ Dr S. Sivanesan, assistant governor highlighted.
Running on the global Rotarian theme of “Be the Inspiration” this year, all initiatives of the club are focused in six key areas: peace and conflict prevention/resolution; disease prevention and treatment; water and sanitation; maternal and child health; basic education and literacy; as well as economic and community development.
Dr Shan Narayanan, incoming president for 2018/19 detailed his vision for the club, “First and foremost, to consolidate the club and increase membership. Next, doing a project in each avenue of service and increasing fellowship among members. Our strength lies in the youth service, thus we want to further enhance activities in this avenue.”
Youth service recognises the importance of empowering youth and young professionals through leadership development programmes such as Rotaract (in Universiti Teknologi PETRONAS and St Michael’s Institution) and Interact (in Anglo-Chinese School, Methodist Girls’ School, St Michael’s Institution and Tarcisian Convent).
“For Perak schools, the Rotary Club of Kinta is the organiser for the annual National I-Quiz Challenge Trophy, a general knowledge quiz. We send the winning team to Kuala Lumpur for finals,” Rev Robin Arumugam, charter member and past assistant governor elaborated.
Under community service, the projects encompass medical camp, medical talk, site visit to Orang Asli villages, dengue awareness campaign, prevention of avoidable blindness, eradication of polio, dental equipment donation and wheelchairs for the needy.
“Currently we are supporting and facilitating two single mothers who aspire to be entrepreneurs,” Dr Shan added.
Looking for service-minded individuals of 21 years old and above, the membership goes on expertise classification and is by invitation only. “Our motto is, ‘Service above Self’. Men and women who joined Rotary are young professionals or established people who are able to contribute time and expertise to give back in humanitarian projects both locally and internationally,” Nigel Jones, the President-elect for 2019/20 added.
Present were Gnanasagaran Ratnasamy, honorary secretary and Dr S Elangovan, director of community services and past president.
Interested readers may contact Gnanasagaran at 012 5162102 or Dr Shan at 016 5940321. For updates or swing by its Facebook page: Rotary Club of Kinta
Dr Shan Narayanan, consultant general paediatrician cum professional coach and now the incoming president of the Rotary Club of Kinta, is a regular columnist in the Ipoh Echo writing on child health and coaching.