Down the Memory Lane - 31st Rotaract District Conference
In each and every one of your lives, there will always be things that will make you feel immensely joyful, proud and content when looking back at the journey you have been through. Well, my friends, you are in for a real treat.
Now I'm about to take you on a journey through the story of a group of five host clubs who came together to work wonders and make this year's conference a success. Oh boy!! Things are gonna get far more interesting…
'Progressive Youth in co-Creating Sri Lanka”
Does it ring any bells?
The 31st Rotaract District Conference was built upon the theme of "A progressive youth co-creating Sri Lanka." This year's Conference promoted and empowered Sri Lankan youth to identify solutions to current issues in the country and to take action in order to build a better future.
As you may be aware, once Sri Lanka was hit by the epidemic, and despite the fact that we were credited with having the finest response to the first wave, things went poorly from there. As a result, no acceptable setting existed for the meeting to take place on a physical platform. We were fortunate enough to be able to convene this year's conference on a physical platform after several virtual conferences.
You may be thinking right now, "Wow, you guys are so lucky to be a part of the host club."
Yes, we were extremely fortunate, but it does not compare to the countless hours of labor that we had to put in to keep things running. It wasn't an easy task. Things kept popping up from all over the place. And we were fortunate enough to have the best people on our side. It would not be an exaggeration to say that it became a conference to remember as a result of the conference team's hard work, understanding, teamwork, and solidarity.We, the University of Moratuwa Rotaract Club, collaborated with four other clubs as host clubs to make the conference the finest, if not the best, in its history. The Rotaract Clubs of Colombo Fort, Kadawatha, Kandy, and the Faculty of Engineering - University of Jaffna joined us in witnessing our aspirations come true, together with the District Steering Committee.
Rotaract Mora has had a long and fruitful relationship with District Conference, which has led us to serve as one of the premier host clubs and to serve as a link between our fellow Rotaractors and District as well as other clubs this year.
This is where we, the conference chairpersons for this year, come in.
The ultimate duo…Malintha and Dasis.
Some people thought it was hilarious that we collaborated when the majority of what they saw was us two arguing over something. But I suppose we'll always be frenemies (friends/enemies)...
I wasn't present at our initial meeting because I was later appointed as a co-chair. Malintha, on the other hand, kept me informed about everything that was going on. It was immensely helpful... Every week, we conducted meetings to discuss each side's progress. The entire process of the conference was followed by the representatives from each club under several committees, including Partnerships & Finance, Program, PR, and Logistics, since the planning had to be immaculate from the scratch. Several meetings were held throughout the course of the five months to discuss the proceedings and make adjustments. It was decided to hold a weekly meeting on Wednesdays to discuss the progress of the allocated tasks. The meetings took place in a hybrid setting. The attendance for the meeting from Rotaract Mora’s end was highlighted.
Coming back to the story, day by day, we worked hard as a team. Malintha and I split the job load to make things easy for both of us. And he did an incredible job, and I'm extremely fortunate to have him as a co-chair. Members of the organizing committee from Rotaract Mora put forth a lot of effort, from preparing content for the proposal to designing the theme introduction campaign for the e-souvenir. Manul ayya and Malintha were mostly in charge of the PR section.
While that was happening, I was in charge of handling the Rotaract Showcase, which also took a significant place at the conference. And represented Rotaract Mora in helping the District Steering Committee in making it a success.
Everything was in position by the morning of April 2nd, and we were prepared to deal with high levels of tension and anxiety for the whole day. The persons who were participating in the showcase were the first to arrive, as they all had to set up their own stalls. They then began putting up posters, banners, and presentations to the best of their abilities. And it was almost perfect.
Among all, with 3 renowned specialists in the industry, we had a very insightful panel discussion on the future of Sri Lanka and how we as the youth can contribute. Furthermore, several Rotarians joined the show and shared their stories on Rotaracy and Rotaract. The day couldn't have gotten any better but….it DID!!! Our DRR. Akila, DRRE Ahamed and DRRN. Sathma kept us energized throughout the day by sharing Rotaract insights on the Rotaract movement with the delegates. And I’m sure… they loved it…
The entire day felt like a roller-coaster ride. It went by quickly and left us both emotionally and physically weary. By the end of the day, all of us had a feeling of satisfaction with a hint of sadness.
Now that the days are long gone, we are quite grateful for the opportunity to be a part of the organizing committee for the 31st Rotaract district conference. Because it has aided us in expanding our horizons and, more importantly, has taught us numerous lessons along the way. The project was nowhere near perfection, for sure. There's still a lot that can be done to improve and develop. But the best thing was getting to experience all that.