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THE HANDOVER CEREMONY– New Beginnings at RCNC

The Rotaract Club of Nairobi Central (RCNC) prides itself in having spectacular and presidential handover ceremonies unlike any other Rotaract club around. Heck! We even find ways to outshine Rotary clubs!

On the last meeting before the beginning of the new Rotary year 2016-2017, the official handing over ceremony took place at the swanky Laico Regency Hotel, Nairobi.

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Denis “Le Grand” Munene, President of the Rotaract Club of Nairobi Central, 2016-2017

With all the hype from our publicity docket (read Rtr. Jamal Harsam), you were assured of a big turn-out and an incredible good time. A friend was asked to bring in a friend who would also tag along another friend….

“There is no way I am missing the handover”

This was the tagline and sound bite on the streets and online conversations. True to these proclamations, on the said date, RCNC had the biggest number of guest and visitors witnessing the handing over ceremony!

This was the tagline and sound bite on the streets and online conversations. True to these proclamations, on the said date, RCNC had the biggest number of guest and visitors witnessing the handing over ceremony!

Let’s back-track a little bit.

Every July, a new Rotary year begins. Rotaract Clubs around the world are led by presidents, who works with a board of directors to handle the affairs of the club. Such is the structure of Rotary globally, that the president serves a Rotary year which runs from July to June of the every year (in this case 2016-2017). Therefore, the handing over ceremony is the day when the serving president relinquishes presidential powers to a new president. In this case, Rtr. Mary Gaichiri would hand over the presidential mandate to Rtr. Denis Munene (Le Grande) who would serve as the club’s 39th President.

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Immediate Past President, Rtr. Mary Gaichiri, peacefully handing over the baton of club leadership to President Denis by feeding him some yummy slice of cake

Well now that we are on the same page we can now get back to the main event. Shall we?

The air around Marsabit Hall at Laico Regency was filled with expectant faces. The incumbent president’s family was in the house to witness the ‘inauguration’ of their son as the club’s president (A proud family moment indeed!). This was even more spectacular because Rtr. Denis’s father is a Rotarian!

Everything was in order and after introductions by the master of ceremony, Rtr. Japheth Agwanda, the ceremony kicked off.

First off, there was the induction ceremony for Rtr. Peris Wangechi followed with a speech by the soon to be Immediate Past President (IPP) Rtr. Mary Gaichiri.

Lost again?

Well, an induction ceremony is the official step that is taken by a Rotary or a Rotaract club to accept an individual into their ranks. While being a member translates to more responsibility, subscription fees and being more active in club committees and events, it is nonetheless one of the best joys of life, getting the opportunity to serve humanity, grow as an individual, socially and professionally. It is a responsibility that is earned, and you only obtain a membership lapel pin once you have proven yourself fit.

Now we are on the same page, right? Moving on swiftly……………………….

Remember the mention about the handing over ceremony being an extraordinary event? Rotary as a club is built with the core mission of developing professionalism and building leadership skills. The District Governor Elect (DGE), Rotarian Peter Mbui was the guest of honour to witness the transfer of power. He gave the attendees a remarkable presentation on developing a ‘Life Plan’, an eye opener that left many inspired.

The handover ceremony finally and beautifully kicked off. The Presidential chain was exchanged from Mary Gaichiri to Denis Munene and the new president sworn in the presence of DGE Peter Mbui and Rtn. David Githanga, President of the Rotary Club of Nairobi.

As expected, the newly appointed Club President gave his well- articulated maiden speech filled with joyous smiles. He lauded his family and father for exposing him to Rotary and Rotaract through meetings, which he innocently attended as a young lad just to eat out at exquisite places around the beautiful coastal town of Kilifi!

The powerful speech gave President. Rtr. Denis a standing ovation. Well, we have a great orator for President!

The cake, there had to be cake! A mix of white and black forest cakes, specially made to delight every attendee’s taste buds. Feeling the yummy delight already? Good!
Cake eating is a nod of acceptance, a ceremonial way of showing happiness, peace and understanding.

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Some of the New Board members 2016-2017, together with alumni pose for a group photo

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And the RCNC Legacy continues: President Elect Nicodemus Chege (left) and President Nominee Jamal Harsam (right) share a light moment during their introduction to the Club at the 39th Handover Ceremony

Thereafter, the outgoing and the incoming boards were introduced. A few too many photos later, a vote of thanks was given by Rtr Joseph Wangai and voila, the ceremony was over. People were free to mingle and leave at their pleasure. The joyful faces, hugs, laughs and smiles said it all: a most beautiful evening was spent.

The best is yet to come!

Mercy Bolemi,
Member: The Rotaract Club of Nairobi Central

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