A trip around the world wouldn’t be complete without good companions—and the more, the merrier! That’s the attitude several Quota clubs in Australia have taken as they reach out to one another, enjoying international events as well as the local surroundings. And the best part is, they don’t need to leave home to enjoy this special “international” adventure.
The “world tour” in question commenced in “Fiji,” when Quota International of Liverpool in New South Wales visited the Parkes club (also located in New South Wales) for a weekend that included the Club’s Fiji-themed international dinner. The clubs were linked when past district governor Gabriela Roberts of Liverpool met a Parkes resident and was impressed with his descriptions of and enthusiasm for his hometown. She contacted the Parkes club, and soon more than 40 Liverpool Quotarians were on their way for a weekend holiday.
The visitors joined their hosts for the club’s international dinner, which whisked them away to Fiji. Everyone enjoyed Kava, a traditional Fijian drink, as they donned leis and hibiscuses and chatted while awaiting a feast that featured a pig on a spit.
Liverpool club members also enjoyed the local sights that had brought them there. The Mayor welcomed them with a civic reception and the Parkes club hosted a buffet dinner upon their arrival. Their weekend also featured visits to the Austop Wool-Making Plant and the Parkes Radio Telescope, a guided tour, and a visit to the gold tunnels beneath the Albion Hotel at Forbes.
Enthused by the success of the visit, the Parkes club decided to invite more guests on their next “international tour.” Quota International of Canberra attended their next International Dinner, an Alaskan cruise, and a good time was had by all—so much so that the Canberra club reciprocated with an invitation to Canberra later in the year. Since then, the Parkes club has joined the Canberra Quotarians on its “Night on the Orient Express,” and the Liverpool club also hopped onboard for their “Quota Flight to New Zealand, India, and Italy.” The clubs’ worldwide tours will soon take them back in time: one of their upcoming trips includes a visit to Parkes’ “Elvis Festival” early next year.
Visits like these have opened up communications for the clubs year-round. “When we meet them at the South Pacific Area Meeting, for instance,” says Parkes club president Pam Nankivell, “we are comfortable with them and easily able to talk and exchange ideas.”
Gabriela agrees. “Our members have thoroughly enjoyed meeting Quotarians from other clubs and districts,” she says. “We feel it broadens our view of Quota to talk to others, get inspiration for fund-raising, and marvel at what other clubs are achieving.”
She recommends that other clubs forge relationships and says enthusiasm and commitment are key: “Establish and maintain contact with an individual who is proactive and enthusiastic about developing an on-going relationship between clubs. Ensure your club participates in supporting the other club so it is not a one-way thing.”
Pam offers advice for strengthening those relationships at events. “Ask the other club when you are having an interesting or enjoyable function, and treat them as you would treat any other visitors,” she says. “Mix with them, make sure you have a good time, and encourage new friendships.”
The clubs’ work together proves that partnership, whether for a weekend of fellowship or a joint service project, pays off exponentially. “There is no doubt that the power of synergy is enormous, and it is much easier to appeal for a united effort to achieve something when you know and like the people whom you are asking,” Pam says.