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Sitting here exhausted after a long day and post migraine, I feel somewhat disheartened by some comments about Facebook. After a few moments of self-pity I was prompted to think about the positives, something that always outweighs the negatives!

In my personal life I have found that careful use of FB has allowed me to link up with old friends and family in far flung places, and to kindle new friendships whilst maintaining current ones. I have learnt local and national and international news on Facebook before hearing it in the news or newspapers. I have learnt of local events which I have then been able to support. Careful use of Facebook has ensured these events have been brought to my attention at the early stages of planning (setting the date) and gentle reminders have been presented to me leading up to the day – ensuring that I have not forgotten!

So how can we use Facebook in Rotary so that it works to our advantage?

For six months now I have been building the Faringdon Facebook page. It is something of a scrapbook of photos and information on events we have run, attended, or supported. Thanks to input by Mike Bell we have a photograph of the founder members of the club at the Charter Night. There are albums of photos taken at The Fun Run, RIAT, Truck Fest, the Car Treasure Hunt and BBQ to name but a few. We have pictured guest speakers on club nights (remember Colin and the American Hawk?), our Ambassadorial Scholars and our RYLA candidate Ben.

I have been able to publicise upcoming events and we even recruited additional volunteers for RIAT through Facebook. Links to our club website are added to particular messages eg. dates for Father Christmas and Thomas the Tank Engine – information of public interest.

Over the past few weeks we have been able to share news from our team in Nepal publishing photographs and up to date news of their progress.

Gone are the days of referring to encyclopaedia or the phone book when looking for information. We now reach for our laptops, I-pads or smart phones to access the internet for that information. If Rotary is to survive it must keep up with modern trends and habits.

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