Service

As I grew older, I have passed through different service organizations, which, unfortunately for me but for good reasons, have age limits to stay active and attractive to young people.

I am happy to now be reunited with friends from different phases of my service past in our newly founded Lions Club Wiesbaden Oranien.

The friendships from Round Table lives on in Old Table 18 Wiesbaden.

Round Table is a service club for young men up to age 40. With the guidelines Adopt, Adapt, Improve Round Table gets involved in various local and national service projects. We learn from each other and from external speakers, and we build international friendship and understanding – and have a good time together.

I have been a member of the German Round Table 18 in Wiesbaden from 2003 to 2012 (there is an age limit to being a round tabler.  Key activities of the table include supporting the projects for troubled youths operated by the Evangelischer Verein für Innere Mission (EVIM) in Wiesbaden. Besides fundraising, getting in touch with the kids and organizing activities for them are important to us.

In January 2006 I visited Kenya. We traveled around the beautiful country and got in touch with tablers from Round Tables in Mombasa, Nairobi and Kisumu, where Kenya’s RT 18 has become our twinning table.

Having seen the situation in Kenya, and even a public school in Kisumu, it was of course a matter of heart for me to be part of the 2007/2008 National Service Project of Round Table Germany, the Round Table School of Hope in Kisumu, Kenya.

Another key part of my tabling times was 1000 Kinder hören und sehen with two unforgettable trips to Ukraine to equip more than 1000 hearing impaired children with their own proper hearing aids.

Recent presentations I gave in Round Table and/or Old Table include the topics of skepticism and critical thinking, nuclear energy, and the unsolved mysteries of physics.

Another really active table which I can recommend from our common work during my time in Rotaract is Round Table 74 in Hanau.

Our table also does at least one fundraising activity every year to support the annual  national service project of Round Table Germany.

Rotaract (Germany) is an organization for young people age 18 to 30, which is closely linked with Rotary (Germany).

Their guidelines are, I think, best summed up in three words:
Help – Social projects ranging from emergency relief in Africa to children in the refugee shelter next door, usually done contributing time and work rather than money.
Learn – At almost every meeting, a member or a rotarian or some other guest (like me, when I’m asked…) makes a presentation on a topic ranging from arts and crafts to international politics.
Party – Parties, dance balls, fun sports events and international meetings are an excellent chance to meet other rotaractors from all over the world – and in more than one case, friends for life.
In my active times, I was a member of the Rotaract Clubs of Hanau and Munich.
If you’re in the right age bracket, get in touch with your nearest club!

The Deutsche Gesellschaft zur Rettung Schiffbrüchiger (DGzRS) helps people in danger at sea or along the coast. Supported entirely by donations, they operate a fleet of about 20 emergency cruisers between 20 and 50 metres long and about 30 smaller boats. For a former navy sailor like me, supporting the DGzRS is a matter of honor, and it should be for everyone who ever steps aboard a ship.

The Zoologische Gesellschaft Frankfurt continues the work of Bernhard Grzimek (THE face of wild animal TV programs in Germany up to the 1980s), by protecting wild animals and their habitats in projects mostly in Europe or the tropical parts of Africa, Asia and South America. Their work has a solid scientific foundation.
Unlike other organizations active in that field they do not use doubtful fundraising practices like taking money (donations or via consulting contracts) from one major company while at the same time chastising other companies for supposedly harming the environment…