Rotary Friendship Exchange unites members from across the globe
Edwin Bos and his family have visited India, Nepal, and most recently, the Philippines, through one of Rotary’s unique programs, Rotary Friendship Exchange. This exchange program gives Rotary members and their families the chance to experience new cultures — and make lifelong friends — by staying in the homes of Rotarians in other countries.
Participating in the exchange was the best decision I’ve made as a Rotarian.
Member of the Rotary Club of Jefferson, Wisconsin, USA
Bos, assistant governor of District 6250 in Wisconsin, USA, led 13 Rotary members and their families on an exchange to the Philippines, where they stayed with Rotarians in District 3850. While there, they visited several projects, including a depository for shoe donations, a library’s computer literacy program, and a clean water initiative. Participants also enjoyed local festivals and learned about ecotourism in the Philippines.
Rotary Friendship Exchange fosters interclub collaboration, with the goal of advancing international understanding and peace through service projects and spending time together.
Bos’ district has worked on several international service projects, including a global grant project with the Rotary Club of Kalibo, Aklan, Philippines, that provided clean water.
“Participating in the exchange was the best decision I’ve made as a Rotarian,” says Ellen Waldmer, of the Rotary Club of Jefferson, Wisconsin, USA. “I had the opportunity to see a water project our clubs and others helped fund and celebrate with the children and families it benefited.
“We’ve made so many new Rotary friends while visiting our host families and clubs. It’s an experience we will treasure for years to come,” she adds.