THE YEAR IN REVIEW
Well, our 2011 season has come to a close. We enjoyed some wonderful evenings of companionship and learning this last year. Highlights include a presentation on the Nonviolent Peaceforce by Jeanne Lound Schaller of the Helen M. Casey Center for Nonviolence, Victor Hugo Aviles told us about his home country of Bolivia and Albert Brown told us about his home of Uganda. We changed up our format for fall, meeting in the more intimate setting of the St. Paul Lutheran church of Sanford. There we heard from Global Compassion founder Indira Oskavarik and local students Emily and Telly who travelled to Handa, Japan as representatives in our Sister City exchange.
Unfortunately, our November trip to the Arab American National Museum was cancelled due to low ticket sales, but we had a good time at NADA for our holiday dinner.
OUR CHAPTER’S FUTURE
Like many organization in America today, our membership demographic is continuing to age. We have lost several members in the last few years to death and illness, and several of our formerly active members are no longer able to participate as they once did. We have cycled through the same six or seven people as officers over the last decade, and admittedly, we are tired.
Over the last year, the topic of our chapter’s future has come up on more than one occasion. We’ve had virtually no new additions to our membership in the last six years. The loss of Art Teot had an especially big impact on our club as his energy and connections had kept our Annual International Dinners well attended, with over 100 guests for many years. The 2011 Dinner was cancelled.
So, what do we do? This was the topic of the most recent board meeting. Membership will soon be getting a letter from President Deb Teot with our recommendation. Stay tuned.