Rotary Club of Jomtien-Pattaya celebrates 25 years of humanitarian service
Rotary Club of Jomtien-Pattaya celebrates 25 years of humanitarian service
Pattaya Mail, Friday, 9 March 2012 by Pattaya Mail Reporters
"The foundation upon which Rotary is built is friendship; on no less firm foundation could it have stood"
Paul Harris, founder of Rotary
President Gudmund Eiksund welcomed the gathering, comprising many members of our Rotary fraternities from close by and as far away as the USA and Australia, establishing an international milieu, which is quintessentially the Rotary spirit.
PDG Xanxai Visitkul expounds on the philosophy and principles of Rotary.
A delightful dance troupe from the Baan Jing Jai Children’s Home comprising of angelic little girls in beautiful Thai costumes regaled the room as they welcomed the guests with the traditional ‘Ram Ouayporn’ dance.
Dr. Paolo Battaglino, Honorary Consul of the Republic of Italy and his family, along with Senator Sutham Phanthusak and Deputy Mayor Ronakit Ekasingh gave a sense of distinction to the event by their presence.
A delegation from District 3350 included Past District Governors Xanxai Visitkul, Chairman of the Rotary Centre in Thailand, PDG Chow Nararidh, Mr. Roadman, PDG Krit Indhewat, Rotary International’s Fiscal Agent in Thailand, PDG Krai Tangsanga and his charming wife Rungnapha.
PDG Peter Malhotra speaks about the history of the club.
PDG Peter offered a most enlightening discourse on the formation of Rotary more than a century ago and the chartering of his own club, the Jomtien-Pattaya saying, “This is a day that we should not only celebrate but we should also spare a thought for some of the great Rotarians who helped form this club and carved out the path of service to humanity which we follow faithfully to this day.
President Gudmund welcomes guests to the celebrations.
“Some of this group included PP Hans Zurfluh, PP Alois X Fassbind, Gene Farley, PP Hank Whittaker, Dang Harbhajan and Bill Burbridge.
“Having decided to form a new English speaking Rotary Club they requested the permission of the district who appointed PP Nitti Meyer as the special representative of the District Governor to guide and help us charter our club. The Rotary Club of Bangkok South kindly agreed to be our sponsor club.
“Now Pattaya was a totally new ‘market’ so to speak, so to find a group of English speaking residents of Pattaya who would understand and join an organization that they had little or no knowledge of, was a challenge in itself.”
PDG Premprecha Dibbayawan extols on the good virtues of Rotary,
the world’s foremost service organization.
“Then it was my turn and he asked me the question. I stood up and said, I’m not really sure, but from what I hear, I can do some good for the community and help those who need relief.”
As a provisional club, there were many more introductory meetings held, but the group dwindled with every session until there were only a handful of potential members who persevered and came back to the meetings. Finally with the support of 25 unrelenting members, the paperwork went through at Rotary International headquarters and the Rotary Club of Jomtien-Pattaya received its charter on the 12th day of February 1987.
PP Nitti Meyer was the district governor’s special representative
who helped form the Rotary Club of Jomtien-Pattaya 25 years ago.
“There have been and are many noteworthy Rotarians in our club that have kept us upright in our undertakings and have brought us much honour.
“Our club has been the basis of introducing other non-Thai speaking clubs in Pattaya, namely the Rotary Clubs Eastern Seaboard, Rotary Club Taksin Pattaya, Rotary Club Pattaya Marina (French) and Rotary Club of Phoenix Pattaya (German).”
Peter continued, “We must not neglect to honour our past presidents who have dedicated so much to keep our club’s flag flying high with pride. The history of our club is full of legendary Rotarians. From our charter president Hans Zurfluh to the present president Gudmund Eiksund we have helped and served hundreds of thousands of men, women and children with our sacrifice and unbounded humanitarian projects. We could mention many more names but where do we stop?”
Senator Sutham Phanthusak extends his best wishes to Rotarians one and all.
In addition another charter member, Pratheep ‘Peter’ Malhotra also served as District Governor of District 3340 in the year 2008-09. He now serves as the Rotary Public Image Coordinator Zone 6B, which covers 9 districts in 9 countries in Asia.”
In conclusion PDG Peter expressed his feelings about the present and future of the Rotary movement in Thailand and around the world, “This is the opportune time and moment to re-commit ourselves to Rotary. Our chance to do our duty. Our chance to carry the torch of Rotary and keep the fires of Service burning bright, for this and for many generations of Rotarians to come.
Norwegian star Rune Larsen had the crowed tapping their feet.
To quote Past Rotary International President Bhichai Rattakul’s words: “I believe we can change the world, one life at a time. No project is too small or insignificant, especially to those who benefit. My hope is that these seeds of service will blossom and live on for countless generations to come.”
PDG Xanxai Visitkul gave a most profound insight into the meaning of Rotary and what it entails to be a Rotarian, before being called upon to bestow a Paul Harris Fellow recognition to William Macey, the charity chairman of the Pattaya Sports Club.
As was explained by PDG Xanxai, these awards are Rotary’s way of saying thank you to Rotarians or any individual for their sacrifices and dedication to betterment of humanity as a whole and more especially to those who contribute generously in any form to improve the lot of all mankind. Thus helping the Rotary movement and the more than 1.2 million Rotarians around the world do the things that they do best and that is ‘to serve’.
A humongous birthday cake was rolled out to the floor and as the crowd sang Happy Birthday, President Gudmund Eiksund surrounded by dignitaries and members of the Rotary club blew out the candles and cut it, auguring in another 25 hopeful years of humanitarian service to the community.
GM Joachim Grill (right) presents a bouquet on behalf of the Royal Cliff Hotels Group.
PDG Xanxai Visitkul presents the Paul Harris recognition
to William Macey of the Pattaya Sports Club.
Deputy Mayor Ronakit Ekasingh presents a bouquet to President Gudmund Eiksund.
William Macey presents a cheque to President Gudmund to support
the club’s humanitarian projects.
President Gudmund presents an Outstanding Service Above Self Award to PDG Peter Malhotra for
25 years of dedicated service to Rotary, as charter member, President (twice) and District Governor.
Past and future Presidents of the Rotary Club of Jomtien-Pattaya line up for a photograph.
(l-r) Dieter Reigber, Jan Abbink, Judy Hoppe, Gudmund Eiksund, Alvi Sinthuvanik,
Premprecha Dibbayawan, Dennis Stark, Max Rommel and Peter Malhotra.
Radchada Chomjinda (Toy) from the Pattaya Orphanage introduces the two boys who are supported by the Rotary Club in the R.O.S.E. (Rotary Orphan Student Exchange) program.
President Gudmund cuts the birthday cake, watched by PP Dennis Stark and PP Max Rommel.
Jan Olav Aamlid seems thrilled as Senator Sutham Phanthusak greets President Gudmund.
PDG Krit Indhewat enjoys fellowship with PDG Krai Tungsanga and his charming wife Rungnapha.
It was good to see Stefan Ryser (seated left) attend the function.
PDG Chow Nararidh holds court with PDG Premprecha Dibbayawan,
PDG Jin Srikasikorn and P. Malakul.