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Flagging up international friendships

Novus President Pradeep Popat and secretary Pam Spokes receive the banner brought from india by Viren Shah

Novus President Pradeep Popat and secretary Pam Spokes receive the banner brought from India by Viren Shah

Every one of the 1.2 million Rotary Club members are entitled — encouraged even — to visit other clubs, near or far. Traditionally, they will mark their visits by exchanging banners or small flags bearing the name of their clubs. When the visitor next returns to her or his club, they will present the banner to their own club where they will be kept and maybe displayed for others to see.

The circle was completed recently in Pune, India, when member Virendra Shah returned to the Rotary Club of Pune South  and handed over the banner he had been given in Leicester to his club president, Kiran Purohit.

 

Rtn Viren Shah presents to Kiran Purohit, president of the Rotary Club of Pune the banners of the Rotary Club of Leicester and the Rotary Club of Leicester Novus which he received when he visited Novus

Rtn Viren Shah presents to Kiran Purohit, president of the Rotary Club of Pune South the banners of the Rotary Club of Leicester and the Rotary Club of Leicester Novus which he received when he visited Novus. The Leicester banner had been presented to Viren by President Richard Power

At about the same time that Viren had been visiting Leicester, Novus member Jim Matthews had been visiting the Rotary Club of Bijilo, in The Gambia. The club is brand-new and is the fourth club in he West African country. Over the last 22 years since Jim has been holidaying there, he has now visited all four.

The members welcomed Jim and suggested that he should be given a Gambian name. They chose Lamin, which is traditionally given to the first-born son. Jim thanked them for the honour and, looking round at the 25 young people at the meeting, acknowledged that it was very appropriate, since he was clearly the oldest person there!

Jim 'Lamin' Matthews with Banki Njie, president of the Rotary Club of Bijilo, with Rotarians Mai (left) and Fatou Bah

Jim ‘Lamin’ Matthews with Banky Njie, president of the Rotary Club of Bijilo, with Rotarians Maimuna Williams (left) and Fatou Bah